Politics & Policy

Hundreds of Colleges Using Phone App to Track Students on Their Walks Home

Police can be dispatched if students who log in to the app don’t show up to their destination.

A Massachusetts state university will soon become one of hundreds of colleges to use a “campus safety” smart-phone application to track kids on their walks home.

The Rave Guardian Campus Safety App is designed to protect students from dangers such as “walks from the library to the dorm at night,” according to an article published in South Coast Today about the app’s use at the University of Massachusetts Darthouth.

Before walking somewhere, students log in to the app and tell it where they’re going, then notify the app when they arrive at that destination

If students do not notify the app that they have reached their destination before a timer is up, their “profile” — which includes “current location, medical conditions, course schedule, addresses, campus ID photo and other critical data” — is automatically sent to law enforcement.

“If you’re not where you want to be at the expected time, campus police will show up,” Colonel Emil Fioravanti, UMass Dartmouth’s campus director of public safety, told South Coast.

All of the students’ information is stored in Rave’s databases.

The app will be available at Dartmouth in September. Schools that use it currently include University of Pennsylvania and University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. (No one has speculated on whether or not the creation of the app contributes to abduction culture.)

— Katherine Timpf is a reporter for National Review Online.

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