This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Most Americans are familiar with the Department of Homeland Security’s “If You See Something, Say Something” campaign. The program, which encourages citizens to report suspicious activities to local authorities, has been in place in Los Angeles since 2009, according to the Los Angeles Times. And with the launch of iWatchLA, a new anti-terrorism smartphone app, the Los Angeles Police Department is making it even easier for residents to help keep the City of Angels safe.
The app, which is available for both iOS and Android devices, is a cutting-edge step forward in public safety. More and more, texting and instant messaging have supplanted phone calls as the preferred method of communication — and iWatchLA uses this to its advantage, giving users a direct link to the LAPD’s Counter-Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau. With just a few clicks, anyone can file a real-time report on what they believe might be some sort of criminal activity, and can include photos and audio in their reports.
If you’re not sure just what constitutes suspicious activity, iWatchLA can help there, too. The app also serves as a resource for educating the public on terrorism-related behaviors. It points, for instance, to a hotel guest who arrives with a vast collection of luggage or one who refuses housekeeping service as possible red flags.
There are, of course, plenty of reasonable explanations for both of those aforementioned behaviors as well, but the LAPD has made it clear that users should err on the side of safety. And that they should focus on the behaviors in particular, not the individuals. “We’d rather have more information than less,” LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said during a recent news conference. “We don’t mind doing the vetting.”
Among the details the police are looking for are where an activity took place, the time of day it occurred, a description of the people you saw, exactly what you saw and whether you’ve seen this same activity happening in the same area before.
“We can’t be everywhere,” said LA County Sheriff Jim McDonnell, “but the public is everywhere.”
H/T: Los Angeles Times
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.
Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards