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Below is a list of our frequently asked questions, but if you're still stuck, feel free to send us a message

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FAQs

Getting Started

The Motion & Fitness Activity permission allows the app to detect when you are moving and when you are stationary. This information allows it to pro-actively manage battery consumption so that, when stationary, location data is pulled less frequently.

  1. Download the app
  2. Enter your organization’s email address*
  3. Follow the prompts to complete your registration

You must complete your registration before you can begin using SafeZone

Phones: SafeZone currently runs on:

  • iPhones (iOS v12+)
  • Android phones* (Android v6+) and
  • Windows PCs (a limited-functionality desktop version of SafeZone is available – contact your organization’s IT department for details).

IMPORTANT: SafeZone for Android requires Google Play Services for geo-location, push notifications, and to periodically wake the app. Google Play Services is supported by most Android devices. Newer Huawei devices (Mate 30 Series, Honor 30 Series and P40 Series, and later) are not supported due to restrictions on Huawei’s ability to use Google apps and services. Blackberry 10 and Nokia X are only supported when Google Play Services is installed manually.

Tablets: SafeZone currently runs on iPads or Android tablets however, as most tablets do not have a standard SIM-based incoming voice call capability (i.e. no phone number), we recommend an iPhone or Android phone as your primary sign-up device.

If you don’t have a smartphone: but you do have a mobile phone and a tablet or iPad, use that device to sign up but put your separate mobile phone’s number in as your contact number.

Your organization may send you a “Pre-Registration Invitation” by e-mail. In this case, follow the instructions in the e-mail (use the e-mail address and password given in the e-mail) and you do not need to go through the e-mail confirmation process. You will still need to complete the Personal Details form, and choose your User Groups, however after that, the SafeZone App will be running immediately.

Email Address: You must use your organization’s email address. If you are signing up through a university or college, use the e-mail address supplied by your organization. Personal emails will not work.

Password: Do not use your organization password. If you forget your password, you can easily reset it.

Name: Use your real name. This helps to ensure security can identify you.

Phone Number: Provide your mobile number. If you are signing up for the first time on an iPad or tablet, use your mobile number (even if that is not a smartphone). In most situations, responders will use this to contact you.

Picture (optional): This will help responders identify you if you are in a crowded location.

Other optional Information: Your organization may set other fields e.g. your office number, a medical condition, or a physical limitation that will help the security team respond more effectively.

Profile Updates: Once you’ve signed up, you can open the SafeZone app and update your details at any time, except your email address. If you enter the wrong email, sign up again using the correct email address.

Remember that your personal information is held in strictest confidence (see the SafeZone Privacy Policy) and your location is never recorded except when you raise an alert for help from the security team, or “Check In” for a lone-work session.

If you have problems downloading the app or signing up, use your nominated email address to send our support team a message.

SafeZone does not share a user’s location until they send an alert (emergency, first aid, or help), use the check-in or check-in timer features, or submit a tip-report that includes their location. All information that users provide as a SafeZone user is protected by Federal and State Privacy Laws. Read about our privacy provisions.

Check out our privacy video

SafeZone needs to access your location in order to allow you to ‘Raise Alerts’, ‘Check In’, connect Bluetooth devices and signup. Note that your location is only shared when you raise an alert or check-in. Even then, your location is only shared with your organization’s team of professional responders. Your right to privacy is always respected and you can cancel any alert or check-in at any time. We recommend this is set to “Always Allow Access”

By always allowing access to location, you can check-in and then continue to use your phone as normal, minimizing SafeZone to the background and making calls, sending mail, using the internet and other apps. If “only while using” is selected, this is not possible and SafeZone would have to remain in the foreground. This causes additional battery-drain and stops your phone from being effective.

NOTE: Always allowing access does not mean your location is always shared with responders. Your location is only shared when you actively raise an alert or check-in.

  • Location Services Enabled – you will be prompted for this when installing the app. If you need to check the Location Services settings afterwards, here are our recommendations for your phone:
    • iPhone, IPad SETTINGS / PRIVACY / LOCATION SERVICES [ON], and scroll down in the Location Services screen to the SafeZone app, make sure it’s [ON].
    • Android varies by manufacturer and model, eg Samsung Galaxy S3: SETTINGS / MORE / LOCATION SERVICES / Check all boxes (Access, GPS, WiFi) all [ON].
  • Notification Services Enabled – you will also be prompted for this when installing the app.If you need to check the Notification Center settings afterwards, here are our recommendations for your phone:
    • iPhone, IPad SETTINGS / NOTIFICATION CENTER scroll down in the Notification Center screen to the SafeZone app, make sure ALERT STYLE is either BANNERS or (preferably) ALERTS, and ALL other settings are [ON].
    • Android SETTINGS / MY DEVICE / BLOCKING MODE / Either all BLOCKING MODE is DISABLED, or at least Disable Notifications is UNCHECKED [OFF].
  • Wi-Fi enabled – having Wi-Fi enabled (without even being connected to a network) will significantly improve the accuracy of the location information sent by your device.
  • Wi-Fi connected to your organization’s network – being connected to Wi-Fi will help ensure that your alert is sent, even if your mobile service provider does not have coverage.
  • SafeZone does not share your location with the Response Team until you raise an Alert or Check-In.
  • It is not possible for another person to activate the tracking/location function externally – only you can activate this by raising an alert or call, or by checking-in.
  • The location service uses a combination of cell-network, Wi-Fi and GPS positioning. The location service also requires an internet connection (via WiFi or Mobile Data) in order to operate.
  • Your location is most accurately determined when you have “Wi-Fi Enabled”

SafeZone has a number of features designed to optimize battery usage.

Motion and activity detection limits the amount of location polling which is carried out (if allowed in your device’s permissions)

The app can have different activity profile settings, ‘default’ is recommended here for most users.

Also, remember to move SafeZone to the background once checked-in or when not being used.

In an emergency or major event your organization/university may need to send you ‘Alerts’ through push notifications. These notifications may contain:

  • Information or instructions (in the case of emergencies) or
  • links to websites for further information
  • A request to Check-in

A Check-in request would be sent so that response teams know your location and can send appropriate follow-up messages based upon it (for example instructions to evacuate, lockdown or go to an area). It also allows the organization to co-ordinate its response assets getting them to the right areas.

Using the SafeZone App

If you accidentally press any SafeZone call button, you can cancel the call by tapping the button again while the “timer” is winding down. After the call (alert) has been sent, you can still cancel your request, but you will be contacted by security to ensure your safety. Please answer their call or message to confirm you are ok.

You can use a wearable device such as an Apple watch or a Bluetooth Low-Energy Duress Button to raise an alert even though you don’t have your phone open –  a link to a video with information on the button is below. Please check with your organization if they are available to use there.

There is also a check-in timer which allows you to have an alert raised automatically at the end of a countdown if you fail to cancel it.

Alert Device Information Video

Your organization has configured your SafeZone app to send your alert or call to the most appropriate people who can handle your need.

At many locations, such as universities, there will be professional response teams on site.

Your organization may be managing the needs of tens of thousands of people across many locations, often across several countries. No matter in which of their locations you are present (even in other countries), pressing the Emergency, First-Aid or Help button will put you in touch with the most appropriate person to address your immediate needs.

At some locations, your alert may offer you a call to emergency services. If you decline, SafeZone will route your alert to your organization’s main security control room, from where they can triage your needs and organize help.

After pressing any of the three alert buttons, your phone will display three icons in the middle of the screen. From left to right they denote:

  • Obtaining location (checked when successful)
  • Sending your request (checked when successful)
  • Awaiting Acknowledgement from security – the text changes from “Alert Sent” to “Alert Acknowledged” once a security team member has seen your request and physically sent you their acknowledgement.

At any point, you can call the response team directly by tapping the green Call Security button, Call the emergency service number, or cancel the alert by tapping the red button.

If you cancel, the response team will still call you to ensure your safety – PLEASE ANSWER SO THEY KNOW YOU ARE OK!

 

When your alert is activated, all members of your organizations’ response team will receive the alert within seconds and a responder will start moving to your location, attempting to contact you as they do so. The time it takes to reach you will depend on your proximity to the various responder locations.

Your organization may have setup test zones where some alerts can be sent without informing security. Any test zones would be coloured GREEN on the map and marked as test zones on the app’s front screen.

NOTE: Pressing the red, emergency alert will always contact the response teams, even in a test zone.

When you Check-In, your location and ID information is shared with members of your response team. If you need help, you will still need to press an alert button or make a Help call.

No, you do not need to be checked-in first. If you need help, open the app and tap one of the buttons. Unless you wish to share your presence with the response team or are required to check-in for workplace safety reasons, you may never need to check-in.

Battery Optimization on Android devices turns off apps which are running in the background. This means that someone checked-in would not be able to share their location if the app isn’t on the front screen. Since battery life is negatively affected by keeping SafeZone front and centre (and the fact it stops you using the phone for other things!) we ask you turn off this by:

  1. Tapping on Settings
  2. Search for battery optimization
  3. Tap “Apps not optimized” at the top left of the screen and change it for “All apps”
  4. Scroll down to SafeZone (apps listed alphabetically)
  5. Uncheck optimization (turning it off)
  6. Confirm your choice with any pop-up message

SafeZone uses smart device positioning services provided by Apple and Google. Where installed, indoor location and floor level may be provided using Bluetooth beacon technology. Location services must be enabled on your phone or tablet so that your location can be provided to the response team.

Note that:

  • SafeZone does not share your location with the response team until you raise an alert or check-in.
  • It is not possible for another person to activate the tracking/location function externally – only you can activate this by raising an alert or call, or by checking-in.
  • The location service uses a combination of cell-network, Wi-Fi and GPS positioning. The location service also requires an internet connection (via WiFi or mobile data) in order to operate.
  • Your location is most accurately determined when you have “Wi-Fi Enabled”
  • For indoor positioning to work (where installed) Bluetooth must be enabled
  • SafeZone requests access to your location “all times” / “when the app is not in use” when you attempt to check in, so that you can continue to use your phone for other purposes during the session and SafeZone can be placed in the background. SAFEZONE WILL NOT SHARE YOUR LOCATION UNLESS YOU RAISE AN ALERT OR CHECK IN!

SafeZone works in regions that your organization’s response team has defined, where they are able to respond to your request. Typically on a university this is any campus area, but may also cover paths to nearby transport or accommodation.

To see where your organization’s current SafeZone regions are, tap “Regions” in the SafeZone App Menu or tap on the map icon at the top right of the screen.

If you are outside one of the regions and you press a SafeZone button, the app will offer a one-tap call to local emergency services instead and provide you with your current GPS location, which you can pass onto call handlers.

Check with the safety and security team at your organization whether SafeZone is available.

SafeZone will operate at any location, however if you raise a call or alert when you are outside one of the defined SafeZone areas, your app will offer you a single-tap call to local emergency services (e.g. in UK: 999, USA: 911 or Australia 000) and provide your GPS coordinates which you can pass on to call handlers.

Existing Users

If you are an existing user, simply download and install SafeZone and tap the icon to start the app. Sign in with your registered email address and password. If you have forgotten your password, request an automated password reset from the Sign In screen.

You can then tap on the menu icon and your email address and update the phone number on your profile (if it has changed).

It is critical to keep your contact details up-to-date, so that in the event of an emergency, the Security team can easily identify and contact you. If you are using a tablet and you have a separate feature phone which doesn’t have SafeZone, add that phone number to your profile.

To edit your profile, just tap on the menu icon at the top-left of the screen. then tap your email address and update the phone number on the profile page

All feedback is welcome! Select the “Feedback” option in the SafeZone app menu to make suggestions or provide feedback to CriticalArc.

Troubleshooting

You must use your University / Organization e-mail address to sign into SafeZone (not a personal account). If you do not have an email address for the University / Organization, you will have to be pre-registered by your system administrator to have access to the SafeZone features.

If you have used your email address, please check for typos and extra spaces at the start of end of it.

If pre-registered, you should have a message in your inbox with your email address and either, a temporary password or instructions to use your standard Organization / University password.

Verification Emails are required to confirm you have access to the mail address that you are signing up for. The most common issue here is a simple typo when setting up the account. Please check your details and try to sign in again.

If there was a mistake in the original email, you will need to contact your system administrator to get them to delete the incorrect account. This is especially important if you sign in through Single Sign On (where you sign in through your organization’s login page). If you do not know your administrator, you can contact us directly by email.

Email Support

To check-in you first need to be inside a SafeZone Region. There is a list of locations available in the Regions section of the menu. For the check-in to work there needs to be data available (Wi-Fi, or network data) and the app needs to know your location within 200m. Android devices, especially, have a number of power saving options which reduce location accuracy.

A few things to check are:

  • That the “Location Mode” is set to high accuracy or similar
  • That battery optimization or “Doze mode” is turned off for the SafeZone app (You can find this menu by searching “battery optimization” in your phone’s settings menu)

Finally, please check that Google Play Services are turned on as SafeZone utilises them to ascertain location. If you are still having issues, you can contact us directly through Help & Support

Email support

SafeZone will use whatever network is available to send an alert. If your phone is using mobile data, then there may be issues with connectivity so try turning on Wi-Fi.

If you allow the SafeZone App to send an SMS (check permissions menu for your device), an SMS will be generated after around 10 seconds of failing to send via mobile data or WiFi. We recommend that this is enabled.

Finally, raising an alert will provide you with phone numbers for the security team and emergency services, and so if the alert does not send, you can attempt to call them directly or the emergency services with the buttons on screen.

Raising Alerts with SafeZone Video

If your organisation uses Single Sign On, speak to your IT team. If not:

  1. Launch the SafeZone App
  2. Enter your Email
  3. Press Reset Password and follow the steps on screen.
  4. You will get a link in your mailbox to reset your password and create a new one.
Who Created SafeZone?

SafeZone was created and is supported by CriticalArc. CriticalArc develops software products to provide more effective and affordable solutions to enhance the safety and security of large organizations. For more info go to www.criticalarc.com.