New York is using an anti-terror app to keep its people safe

The world remains on high alert following devastating attacks in Mali, Paris, and Beirut, and as America’s busiest travel season draws nearer, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is introducing a new technological initiative he hopes will help keep his citizens safe. On Monday, Cuomo unveiled a new mobile app effort designed to bolster New York’s “ability to fight terrorism.” Called See Something, Send Something, the app encourages state residents to “report suspicious activity through a simple mobile app on their smartphone.”

According to the app’s description on the Apple App Store, See Something Send Something is “the pre-eminent nationwide suspicious activity reporting (SAR) tool for citizens to help in the fight against terrorism.” Not only does the app allow users to instantly send tips to law enforcement officials, but See Something, Send Something also attempts to educate its users on “what to look for and when to submit suspicious activity reports.”

“These new efforts are essential pieces in our fight against terrorism,” Cuomo said. “We have stepped up our preparedness in the aftermath of the Paris attacks, and we continue to remain vigilant against those who seek to spread fear and violence. Despite the tremendous pain and loss that terrorist attacks around the world have caused the people of this state, the family of New York stands stronger than ever before.”

See Something, Send Something is already used in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Louisiana, Colorado, and Virginia, but with New York’s position as one of the most populous states in the country and its all-too-familiar personal history with terrorism, the app’s implementation in the Big Apple may be its biggest test yet.

“It is important to remember that all New Yorkers have a role in keeping our state safe,” said state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner John Melville.

Of course, it’s also important to note that such apps are easily abused — particularly in times of extreme tension, users have been known to send in “tips” that are based more upon their own prejudices than legitimate concerns. “When you ask for anonymous tips, you very well could get false information or information the person believes is true, but turns out not to be correct,” Cuomo admitted. As such, significant vetting will be needed in order to ensure that the information being passed along holds water, and doesn’t simply flood the system with racist comments.

Still, says State Police Superintendent Joseph D’Amico, this app allows for a more open line of communication. “If you see something that may be linked to terrorism, send something,” he urged. “Your tip could provide valuable information that could prevent a tragedy.”

Photography

From DIY to AAA, here's how to take a passport photo in 6 different ways

If you're applying for a passport or renewing one, you need to submit a photo in your official application. There are strict guidelines, but fortunately, it's something you can do at home. Here's how to take a passport photo.
Computing

Our favorite Windows apps will help you get the most out of your new PC

Not sure what apps you should be downloading for your newfangled Windows device? Here are the best Windows apps, whether you need something to speed up your machine or access your Netflix queue. Check out our categories and favorite picks.
Computing

Don't use streaming apps? Try the best free media players for your local music

Rather than using music-streaming apps, you may want something for playing your local music. Good news! There are some good alternatives. These are the best media players you can download for free on Windows.
Mobile

Keep up-to-date with the best news apps on iPhone and Android

Are the days of traditional newspapers and broadcast news dwindling? With apps this good, maybe. Catch up on the latest headlines on any platform with the best news apps on iOS and Android.
Mobile

Having trouble logging in? Here’s how to reset your Apple ID password

To use any of Apple's services, you need to have an Apple ID and know your password. Thankfully, there are ways to deal with forgotten passwords and regain access to your account. Here's how to reset your Apple ID password.
Mobile

Android Q: Everything we know so far about Google’s next mobile OS

Android Pie recently rolled out, but it's already time to look ahead to Android Q, the next version of Google's mobile OS. We've seen a number of rumors and leaks come out about the operating system -- here's everything we know so far.
Mobile

Want more power, but faster? This new charging tech claims it can deliver

Chunky power bricks and slow charging could be a thing of the past with GaNFast technology from Navitas Semiconductors. By using an alternative to silicon, GaNFast reduces power consumption and boosts output.
Mobile

Turn to these apps to help you in your next hunt for a job

Looking for a job can be a stressful experience, but these days, a simple mobile app can help you to find and apply for jobs all over the country -- here are some of the best job search apps for iOS and Android.
Wearables

Swatch and Mastercard team up for on-the-wrist, on-the-go mobile payments

Swatch has announced its Swatchpay technology is now available in Switzerland, enabling mobile payments from your Swatch watch. It works in a similar way to Apple Pay and Google Pay. Here's everything about it.
Mobile

Sony is showing something off at MWC -- will it be the Xperia XZ4?

Sony may have released the Xperia XZ3 in the past few months, but already it's preparing to release a follow-up, the Xperia XZ4. We're learning plenty about the phone now some details have started to leak out, and it's getting exciting.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Mobile

Is this the first image of a Galaxy S10 being used in real life?

It won't be long now; With 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Mobile

Do these Geekbench results accurately represent the Moto G7?

The Moto G6 range is still relatively new to the market, but rumors have already started about the Moto G7, which is expected some time in 2019. Apparently, a G7 Power version will be joining the G7, G7 Play, and G7 Plus.
Wearables

Omron HeartGuide brings blood pressure monitoring to your wrist

High blood pressure leads to heart attacks, strokes, and many other health problems, so it's important to keep an eye on. Omron's HeartGuide is a fitness tracking watch that can also monitor your blood pressure from your wrist.