Citizen sourcing is a technique that allows government to make use of the citizenry’s collective intelligence, for example in the case of children that have gone missing. AMBER Alert Europe connects law enforcement with citizens in the search for missing children. In these cases, every extra pair of eyes that is on the lookout can make the difference!

AMBER Alert Europe maps an always up-to-date overview of AMBER Alerts in Europe. AMBER Alert Europe’s data can, for example, be used to display AMBER Alerts on your advertising screens, highway signs, billboards, websites or even apps. Please contact us for more information.

Best practice: AMBER Alert Europe partners up with Facebook to save lives of missing children

AMBER Alert Europe teams up with Facebook to display AMBER Alerts on the News Feed of Facebook users when a child has gone missing. You can help locate a missing child simply by checking your Facebook app. This took effect in the Netherlands first.

How it works

As soon as the Dutch National Police fear the life of a missing child is in imminent danger, it issues an AMBER Alert. When this happens, Facebook automatically sends an AMBER Alert to the News Feed of Facebook users. This includes a picture of the child and any information that the public would need to be able to help find this child, for example a description of the vehicle. People will also be able to share the AMBER Alert with their Facebook friends, in hopes of extending the reach even further.

Getting out relevant information

“When a child goes missing the most important thing is getting out the relevant and correct information to the right people at the right time. By partnering with AMBER Alert Europe, we can help stretch the reach of this information even further, so that more people can participate in hopefully bringing a child back home safely” says Emily Vacher, Facebook’s Security, Trust and Safety manager.

Best practice: Navigation App Waze (Google) shows AMBER Alerts in 20 European Countries

Waze, Google’s real-time crowdsourced navigation app powered by the world’s largest community of drivers, integrates with AMBER Alert Europe to map urgent information about missing and children, provided by law enforcement and other police mandated organizations.

The integration amplifies AMBER Alert Europe presence within 20 European countries, including France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain, Netherlands and more.

Di-Ann Eisnor, Head of Growth at Waze: “With millions of Wazers active across Europe every month, we can make a real impact in the work still needed to protect and ensure the safety of children all over the world.”

Best practice: French Alerte Enlèvement: Child found as a direct result of the AMBER Alert

On Sunday August 16th, 2015 the French police issued an AMBER Alert (Alerte Enlèvement) for a 4-year-old boy from Rennes, France. Later that day the child was found as a direct result of the AMBER Alert. 

According to the French public prosecutor Thierry Pocquet, the abductor took the child on the TGV from Paris Montparnasse to Bordeaux. The boy was recognized by a French citizen, who informed the French authorities. This enabled the police to recover the child quickly and safely.

Best practice: Campaign to raise awareness for missing children by Initiative Vermisste Kinder

More than 100,000 children and teenagers go missing every year in Germany alone. The Augen Auf campaign of Initiative Vermisste Kinder was aimed at raising awareness for missing children. By training citizens to be alert on unusual or suspicious situations, children in need of help can be recognized and protected from harm.

Every tragedy has a face

Luckily most missing children are found, but some remain missing. Every one of these tragedies has a face, but you can only find that face if you look closely. That is the idea behind Augen Auf (Eyes Wide Open), a campaign initiated by Initiative Vermisste Kinder.

Keep your eyes open!

As Initiative Vermisste Kinder phrases it: “keeping our eyes open is the best protection for our children”. Initiative Vermisste Kinder asked German citizens to stick googly eyes on random objects and post a picture on social media. The more people see these eyes, the more people will keep their eyes open. And consequently, less children will go missing.