Cuomo Wants New Yorkers to Fight Terrorism With a Cell Phone App

Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a counter-terrorism press conference. (Photo: Bryan Thomas for Getty Images)

Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a counter-terrorism press conference. (Photo: Bryan Thomas for Getty Images)

Want to take on al Qaeda and ISIS but not up for a career in law enforcement or the military? Gov. Andrew Cuomo has the solution for you.

Mr. Cuomo today announced a new “See Something, Send Something” app available for download for Android and iOS. The app allows savvy and suspicious New Yorkers to tip off the New York State Intelligence Center with a photo or lead relating to potential terrorist activity.

“We have stepped up our preparedness in the aftermath of the Paris attacks, and we continue to remain vigilant against those who seek to spread fear and violence,” the governor said in a statement that also announced the hiring of 46 new Metropolitan Transportation Authority cops to patrol Grand Central Station, Penn Station, the Staten Island Railway, the Metro North Railroad and the Long Island Railroad.

The release from the governor’s office warns those who download the app to “report only suspicious behavior and situations (e.g., an unattended backpack or briefcase in a public place) rather than beliefs, thoughts, ideas, expressions, associations, or speech unrelated to terrorism or other criminal activity.” It also warns civilians that the app is not a replacement for a 911 call to report an immediate emergency.

But Cuomo administration officials nonetheless argued that “See Something, Send Something” would become an integral new part of New York’s anti-terror infrastructure.

“All New Yorkers have a role in keeping our state safe. Citizens have an obligation to report suspicious activity if they see something out of the ordinary or something that may have the potential to harm others,” said John Melville, commissioner of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. “The new app gives individuals an additional way to alert authorities about possible threats.”

The app is available for iPhone and Android, meaning the governor himself—a known Blackberry owner—will be unable to use it.

Cuomo Wants New Yorkers to Fight Terrorism With a Cell Phone App