Morcombe murder inspires child-safety app

Macworld Australia Staff
29 March, 2012
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The murder of  Australian teen Daniel Morcombe – brutally killed eight years ago –  was an horrific tragedy that may have been prevented if help and technology were at hand. Now, Morecombe’s parents have developed a safety app  for iOS to help other teens in dangerous situations.

Bruce and Denise Morcombe – committed child-safety advocates – have spent months developing their HELP ME app that will launch in iTunes today, as reported by the Herald Sun.

HELP ME ($0.99) is packed with safety features, including a panic button that kids can press if they feel threatened; this sends an SMS alert to two nominated contacts with information on the sender’s exact location.

The app also lets users document and record unusual activity, such as car number plates, identifiable evidence of potential suspects and other relevant information. There’s also a host of useful resources, including emergency phone numbers, safety tips and educational material.

HELP ME can be used by adults too, particularly in the evrnt of suspicious activity. Any information recorded via the app, could later be used as part of a witnes account in the courts.

Mr Morcombe told the Herald Sun that an aid like HELP ME could have saved his son’s life.

“We’ve come back to, ‘What is it that would have helped Daniel?’ One thing was a phone and the option of conveying, ‘I feel threatened’,” he said. ” ‘Run’ would have been our first instruction to Daniel. But then when he was at a safe location, maybe 200m down the road, he could have pushed a button on his phone that would have sent a message saying, ‘I am here and I need help urgently’.”

Truck driver Brett Peter Cowan was arrested last year in relation to Daniel’s murder, after the teen’s remains were found in the Glass House Mountains.

@grace_robinson_

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