Citizen App: Your Personal Safety Assistant

Citizen App allows anyone with a smartphone to help their friends and family find shelter during a fire, crisis, or other emergencies. Police, fire, ambulance, and medical professionals are able to send out notices when an emergency is happening in the area. There is a chat feature where people can chat directly with the person reporting the emergency and see any new developments. If you’re nearby, you can see the live video stream from your neighbors’ phones. If you’re not, you can follow their path and help direct them to the correct address. Citizen can also share photos, videos, and more.

They originally started as “Vigilante” in 2016 but was ultimately pulled thanks to accusations of promoting vigilantism. The app was rebranded and used to offer caution by warning citizens of dangerous incidents in their area, often before the police have responded to them. This puts the focus on avoiding harm instead of rushing into it. Usage of the app has made headlines, including a kidnapped boy being recovered thanks to an alert.

In its current form, Citizen app only alerts users to ongoing emergencies. The app’s early user base is limited to people who live in the US and other countries that share its geolocation service, but will soon be expanded to include the rest of the world.

When the app makes an alert, it sends notifications to a person’s existing phone number, so they’ll get the alert without having to download the app. Users also don’t have to worry about clogging their phone with notifications, since they can turn the feature off. Technology is having a profound impact on public safety. Police officers are using tools such as Citizen to help keep citizens safe and informed when emergencies and critical incidents occur.

Police departments in Minnesota, California, Oregon, Georgia, and New York have adopted the app for the benefit of their communities. These law enforcement agencies are now better able to respond to critical incidents in an informed and useful way, and Citizen App is helping to change the public perception of police in many of these communities. While Citizen is designed to be used on a smart phone, the app also works in any device that supports the app’s Community Map.

With more than 100 million 911 calls made every year, Citizen app makes it easier to save lives by sending timely alerts about major incidents. Citizens near the scene of an emergency can monitor events and provide input about how they should respond. The app does not contain personally identifiable information about users. Click here for more information.


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