UOW app meets security challenges

Wollongong startup CriticalArc is rolling out the campus safety solution it developed at the University of Wollongong in the past 18 months to universities across Australia.

SafeZone is presently being launched at Deakin University, RMIT University, University of South Australia and Queensland University of Technology.

Its introduction across the nation comes just months after SafeZone was first released.

Founder and chief executive Glenn Farrant said the University of Wollongong and Curtin University were among those already using it.

Mr Farrant said with 15 per cent of Australian universities now offering SafeZone, it was helping more than a 250,000 students, staff and visitors a year.

"Across more than 30 campuses ... SafeZone is providing totally new and proactive capabilities for dealing with safety and security scenarios that were previously unmanageable - saving time and money while reducing risk," he said.

Mr Farrant said the locally-developed security product also had global potential. "Providing the safest possible environment is a challenge for all universities worldwide," he said.

"CriticalArc's cloud-based SafeZone system meets this challenge, by providing the response team with unparalleled ability to see what's happening and coordinate resources to achieve the best resolution. The free SafeZone app [safezoneapp.com] makes it easy for students and staff to get help with a single tap on their phone.

"Once signed up for their university, users can send a location-based alert directly to all response team members when they need help. Within seconds the security team, also using smartphones, receives each alert. With a clear map view of the situation, including locations of other team members, the team can coordinate a quick and effective response to any user's need," he said.

Deakin University's vice-president (Enterprise) Kean Selway said the introduction of the service was an important element of a broader strategy to ensure the security, safety and wellbeing of everyone on its campuses.

University of South Australia campus facilities manager Dominic Marafioti said the product was capable of dealing with diverse campus environments.

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