ICE expands reach of smartphone app designed to locate child predators and rescue their victims
Spanish, Android versions now available
WASHINGTON — The first U.S. federal law enforcement app designed to seek the public’s help with fugitive and unknown suspected child predators is now available for Android smartphones, and in Spanish for both Apple and Android versions.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) launched the initial Operation Predator app for Apple products in September 2013. Within 36 hours of its launch, the app helped HSI special agents apprehend a suspect. The latest versions of the app are expected to significantly increase public outreach to help locate child predators and rescue their victims.
“This app is one piece of our commitment to ensuring child predators have absolutely nowhere to hide,” said Acting ICE Director Thomas Winkowski.
The Spanish language versions of the app are built-in to the iOS and Android applications and require no additional downloads. Users who already have the iOS version simply need to update the app or download it fresh from the Apple Store or iTunes.
ICE’s predator app allows users:
- to receive alerts in their smartphones about wanted predators,
- to share the information with friends via email and social media tools,
- to provide information to HSI by calling or submitting an online tip, and
- to view news about arrests and prosecutions of child predators.
The app also provides additional resources about HSI and its global partners in the fight against child exploitation.
The iOS version of the app can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store and iTunes; the Android version is available on the Google Play store.
The first ICE app released in 2013 received honorable mention for “Best App” in PR News’ 2014 Social Media Icon Awards June 2 in New York City. It was one of eight award finalists. The iOS version of the Predator app has been downloaded more than 93,400 times since its initial launch in 2013.
HSI requests anyone with information about the fugitives profiled in the app to contact the agency in one of two ways, which can both be done through the app:
- Call the HSI Tip Line, which is staffed 24-hours a day: 866-347-2423 from the United States and Canada, or 802-872-6199 from anywhere in the world, or;
- Complete an online tip form at www.ice.gov/tips.
Members of the public should not attempt to personally apprehend suspects.