Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How does PhoneFlare initiate an emergency?
You can declare an emergency manually
You can rip headphones or an accessory out of the audio jack (Lighting port, IPhone 7) like an emergency cord on a treadmill.
You can set a time to check-in with your phone. When the time comes, your phone will remind you to check-in with increasing urgency for 5 minutes until finally an emergency is triggered.
Q: What is sent to my contacts in a emergency?
A: Your email address and Map Link: Click here to See an example.
Q: How do you spend donations?
A: Donations go to funding PhoneFlare’s functionality so we can offer our service at no cost.
Q: What happens when you contact my school?
A:PhoneFlare uses your university email to know whatschool to contact in an emergency. Each has a boundary that is with in its area of response. When a emergency occurs PhoneFlare initiates a automatic protocol that calls your schools campus security and gives them your location and email. PhoneFlare also sends a link that will update them with your location in real time.
Q: Can I use PhoneFlare with a non-university address?
A: Yes you can. To protect PhoneFlare users we suspend usage if suspicious activity is found.
Q: Is my Privacy Protected?
A: All personal information of any kind including your name, email and account credentials are kept encrypted and private. The app sends anonymous error reports to help developers. We also anonymously collect the locations and times of emergencies to improve functionality and create date to share with Stakeholders in the battle to end Campus Violence. (i.e. Universities, Governments and NGOs)
Q: What Happens if there’s a false alarm?
A: There are several built in mechanisms to reduce false positives. We require users to give permissions for local notifications as well as vibration and alarm functions. There are also built in delays to give the user an opportunity to disarm without contacts being notified. PhoneFlare would rather have a false alarm anyday then not protect someone in a real emergency.
Q: Can you guarantee my safety?
A: Absolutely not. PhoneFlare can be a useful tool. Make sure it is part of your plan to be safe, but ultimately you are responsible for your own safety.
Q: What happens if someone forces me to disarm?
A: There is a built in feature to address coercion. You have the option of selecting a color needed to disarm. If the wrong color is chosen, it acts as a sort of "silent" alarm, making it look like the device has been disarmed when help is really on the way. When safe, you can disarm online later.
Q: What about the iPhone 7? There's no headphone jack.
A: PhoneFlare is compatible with the IPhone 7. The Lighting port will work just like a headphone port.
Q: Does PhoneFlare work in other countries and/or with international numbers?
A: As of now, PhoneFlare is available only in the US. We are planning to launch internationally.
Q: Why don't you call 911 on behalf of users?
A: There are laws preventing the auto-dialing of 911 dispatch in the US. This is why home security systems have an intermediary service that calls 911 on your behalf once they determine you're in danger. Any precinct or dispatch center that would like to voluntarily add themselves to the database are welcomed to contact us.
Q: I don't want campus safety notified of my location.
A: You have the ability to opt out in the options of the app. Most colleges have "Sanctuary" policies where minor infractions (including underage drinking and recreational drug use) are excused in situations that are in the interest of public safety. We would be happy to speak with you and advocate on your behalf with your institution.
Q: How do I get these Bluetooth Logs?
A: Simply hold down the "account" tab on the options screen and the log will be written to a text file on your device's filesystem.
Links for Android and iOS
Q: How can I get audio recorded from an emergency?
A: Audio is saved to your phone's filesystem. Links for Android and iOS
Q: Does PhoneFlare accept Volunteers?
A: Yes, please click here
Q: Who is part of team PhoneFlare?
A: Please visit our Credits page