Homeland security: there's an app for that
DeMaise, Christopher Michael
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Situational awareness is essential for first responders to critical incidents. Failure to achieve effective awareness of an event can impede decision making and result in drastic consequences. Limitations on the agility and interoperability of proprietary technology and current communications devices prevent effective situational awareness from being achieved and shared. Off-the-shelf mobile applications provide a unique opportunity for this objective to be accomplished. The universal acceptance of mobile technology and free or low-cost mobile applications can be used to enhance situational awareness during critical incidents and even enable sharing ad hoc at the event. While the adoption of this technology presents many cost-effective opportunities to its users, it also presents many challenges related to its adoption. Agencies must be made aware of the logistical, cultural, and policy challenges related to off-the-shelf mobile application adoption and address these issues early in order to effectively employ these technologies during critical incidents.
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