None of us like to think about it, but we need to consider the safety of our children in case of an emergency. Here are three easy ways to use technology to help protect them.
An App to Help Find a Missing Child
If the worst happens and your child is missing, the police and other authorities will want a physical description, photos, and other information to help in the search. Furnishing this information in a stressful situation can use up precious time. There is an easy tech solution: the FBI Child ID . This free tool—“the first mobile application created by the FBI—provides a convenient place to electronically store photos and other vital information about your children so that it’s literally right at hand if you need it. You can show the pictures and provide physical identifiers such as height and weight to security or police officers on the spot. Using a special tab on the app, you can also quickly and easily e-mail the information to authorities with a few clicks.” The FBI says it is “not collecting or storing any photos or information that you enter in the app. All data resides solely on your mobile device unless you need to send it to authorities.” This app is like insurance; you hope you never have to use it but you are glad you have it when you need it.
Although Apple says they are not for people, its AirTag can be attached to wallets, keys, and especially backpacks so you can locate your family members. (And it not only can find your kid, it can help you find your kid’s backpack when they misplace it.) Alternatives to the AirTag include the Tile Pro, Samsung’s Galaxy SmartTag, and Chipolo's Card Spot which is shaped like a credit card.
The X-Plan or Emoji-Plan
Almost every kid has a cell phone these days but too often kids stay in bad social situations merely because they don’t know how to get out of them or they are embarrassed to make a call for help. This is where you can use an “X-Plan” or “Emoji-Plan” to rescue your child. If your child is in a dangerous or compromising situation, they can text “X” or a pre-agreed-upon emoji to their parents or older brother or sister, so someone can quickly help them.