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App on campus

A case study of the University of South Australia (UniSA) that has an app for on-campus safety and security for the 34,000 students and staff.

UniSA selected SafeZone for six disparate campuses, inner-city urban to outback, dispersed across 800kms. By providing situational awareness, SafeZone is enabling UniSA to manage everyday security operations and incidents response procedures faster and much more efficiently, it is claimed.

An intuitive SafeZone app enables UniSA students and staff to summon assistance for an emergency, first aid or general help via a tap on their phone to raise an alert that automatically pinpoints their location. Security staff and coordinators on campuses carry the SafeZone responders’ app on
an iPhone. The cloud-based system shares situational awareness across the security team in the field, giving responders access to live operational intelligence as an event unfolds.

UniSA chose the product from Australian firm CriticalArc in response to security challenges as facing unis worldwide. These included expanding facilities, the rise of flexible 24/7 on-campus learning and to protect round-the clock lone students. As on many campuses, there was a concern that incidents might go unreported, particularly among overseas students in unfamiliar surroundings. UniSA also wanted a better mass notification system plus the ability to monitor performance against KPIs.

Dominic Marafioti, Campus Facilities Manager at UniSA said: “UniSA’s 34,000 students and staff feel reassured by having immediate access to a help point in their pocket and the knowledge that our security team has control room functionality on their belts. Prior to implementation, we conducted an extensive stakeholder consultation with more than 70 staff members and students, where 97% of users said that they found the app easy to use. We were especially impressed with the wide range of features available and how easy SafeZone was to set up. Within six weeks of approval, it was up and running across our six campus communities.”

Mass notification lets UniSA security coordinators send alerts to all staff and students. Tailored instructions can be sent to response teams or messages targeted to groups such as wardens or people at a particular location. Manual check-in processes have been replaced.

Marafioti added: “With no need for expensive help points, centralised control room or SMS messaging, we are providing improved 24/7 protection across our campuses while making significant capital cost savings. As part of our commitment to staff and student wellbeing, SafeZone is ensuring that UniSA remains an extremely safe place to work and study.”

And Glenn Farrant, CEO, CriticalArc, added: “The adoption of SafeZone at UniSA is a clear demonstration of the university’s commitment to ensuring a safe and secure learning environment for students and staff. Fast and cost effective to implement, SafeZone is ideally suited to campuses and multi-site facilities enabling the fastest possible response to incidents to ensure the best outcomes. Working closely with our customers, we’re helping a range of organisations realise significant efficiencies and cost savings across their security operations, while protecting company reputations by ensuring a preparedness against environmental and physical threats.” Visit


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