Use smartphone application [New Straits Time (Malaysia)]
(New Straits Time (Malaysia) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) THE present crime situation calls for innovative solutions. Requests have been made to increase the police presence and increase patrols. However, this will only slightly help and it is very costly to put additional human bodies on the street. Moreover, criminals know how to avoid detection when such uniformed personnel are around.
Fortunately, we are in an advanced society, and technology can be employed to resolve many of these issues. Recently, MyTeksi, a smartphone application, was introduced in Malaysia for calling a taxi. The passenger only needs to open it on his smartphone, enter a destination and press send. Immediately, the taxi drivers in the vicinity will receive this request. Within five to 10 minutes, a taxi will arrive to pick up the passenger.
The passenger need not even give his name or address when he makes the call as the GPS will locate his position and transmit it together with his request to all. He will immediately receive a reply stating the estimated fare as well as the number plate of the taxi that will come.
This application concept can be applied to the reporting of crime before, during or after it happens. A person can open a police reporting application on his smartphone and within 10 seconds submit an electronic report to the police (and any other interested parties can simultaneously receive it too, like the superiors). He only needs to click on his screen the type of crime that is about to happen or is happening, for example a robbery, snatch theft or attack.
This report can then be transmitted immediately to all police personnel in the vicinity of the reporter. The police will be able to reach the person within five minutes or even faster. The arriving policeman can then immediately report back to his base using the same apps too.
There are many advantages. The public can become the eyes and ears of the police resulting in increased surveillance around the clock in all geographical areas by everyone. Potential crime victims can also report their predicament as it happens too. Speed is the essence in any crime reporting and this also allows preventive reporting of suspicious characters loitering in an area.
Nowadays, almost every urban home has at least one smartphone. A new smartphone costs as little as RM400 and it can work as well as those costing RM2,000.
Many of the police personnel have their own personal smartphone too. Equipping them is not costly.
The above concept can actually be used in any emergency reporting, whether medical, fire or natural disaster. Speedier response by the relevant authorities is now possible at very low cost. Also, there can be simultaneous reporting to the various authorities of the same incident with one submission.
The public need not have to decide or know what number to call. Also for ambulance service, the nearest available ambulance (public or private) can respond and the patient will get the required medical attention as soon as possible, possibly saving his life.
Khoo Hai Chew, Kuala Lumpur
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