FBI releases new iPhone app

The FBI has launched a new application for the iPhone that will allow you to report your child missing.

Surrounded by reports of missing people, day after day, you would think I would be encouraging everyone to do this, but I am not convince it will make that much difference.

“We’re trying to improve efficiency.  Typically, when a child goes missing, the first few minutes are crucial,” said the FBI

The idea is, you can upload photos and description of your child.  Then if your child goes missing the information is already there and the FBI can parlay it out to the local authorities.

Before you think that maybe it seems like an invasion of privacy, let me point out a couple of things.

First, your kids are constantly growing, by the time they are an adult, the child photo will most likely look very little like them, so you don’t need to worry about the FBI using it for anything else, although right now I can’t think of what that would be.

Second, there is no one at the FBI, scanning, and looking at the submissions that parents submit.  They are stored and only obtained if needed for an emergency.

Third, it takes time for photos to get out to the media.  Many times I will see an announcement of a missing child, but no photo.  Without that photo, letting my readers know the child missing is frustrating and fruitless, but with the new phone app, it is suppose to bypass that lag time. 

Will this be an idea that parents will embrace?  Hard to say.  Will you do it? 

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Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America.

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