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New MUSST-have safety app available

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Mac students can feel safer this year thanks to the development of a new Security Services app.

It’s called the McMaster University Safety, Security and Transit app, or MUSST, and it’s available for free on iPhone, Android, and touchscreen Blackberry devices. The app provides contact numbers for emergency services and campus resources in addition to information about transportation and safety guidelines.

Upon loading the app, users are greeted by a conspicuous red button that lets them call either Campus Security or 911 with one touch. The front page also links to the McMaster Daily News twitter page and lets one call the Emergency First Response Team (EFRT) and the Student Walk Home Attendant Team (SWHAT), both run by the McMaster Students Union.

EFRT responds to campus medical emergencies and SWHAT will walk you home at night. In another tab, app users can find clinic and hospital locations and familiarize themselves with campus safety procedures.

In addition to these safety measures, MUSST seeks to help students out with transportation. It allows them to call two local taxi services and uses Google Maps to find HSR bus schedules. There are also links to the websites of other bus services, such as GO Bus and Greyhound, but those pages are not consistent in their design for mobile users and can be cumbersome to use on smartphones.

MUSST was developed by Weever Apps, which operates in McMaster Innovation Park, and is a collaborative effort between McMaster Security, Student Affairs, the MSU, and Public Relations. It was inspired by Queen’s University’s SeQure App.

First released in May, it was updated in August and was fully operational in time for the start of this school year. Staff Sergeant Cathy O’Donnell, a security manager at Mac, said that the university will be launching an extensive advertising campaign for the app.

MUSST can be downloaded for free on your touchscreen smartphone. In addition, students living in residence can find a QR code on the cover of their key card that downloads the app when scanned.

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