A real-time, free emergency management platform
Real-Time Response Management
Cell 411 can alert your friends, neighbors, and even emergency service providers when you are in danger, experiencing medical distress, or just need assistance.
Join, organize, and manage Cells of users all on your own, allowing you full control over what services and groups you want to have contact with.
Fully Customized Alerts
You can alert your friends when you need help or receive alerts when they need help, with directions to where you should go. Only people you specifically issue alerts to can see them.
Built By and For Activists
Police brutality, illegal searches and other government abuses can be broadcast out to your local cell with turn-by-turn directions to your location.
Power in your hands
Cell 411 allows you to create custom cells or groups of your friends, neighbors or family members and alert them whenever you need help; they will receive your exact location with turn-by-turn directions to come and assist you. Whether you have a flat tire, you find yourself in danger or need medical assistance, you can leverage the power of large groups of trusted people to call for help and receive it. We even support public groups that allow entire cities, companies or neighborhoods to join and collaborate on solving emergencies in real time.
Cell 411 allows you to request help from only trusted people, or from good samaritans. You have the freedom to ask anyone for help, anywhere you go. With thousands of cells all over the world, communities, families and neighborhood watch groups have been using Cell 411 to keep criminals out, inform each other of emergencies and respond to each other’s needs. Cell 411 puts responsibility back into your hands, away from monopolistic organizations.
Johannesburg Community Watch
Global Cell 411 Users
Frequently Asked Questions
I can't add my friends because they don't have accounts, so now what?
You cannot add someone as a Cell 411 contact unless they also use the app and have created an account on the Cell 411 network. If you cannot find your friends using the e-mail address they used to register, you can send them an invitation to signup. They will receive an e-mail message from you so they can also start using the app and benefit from it. You can send someone an invitation either by adding them as a friend or tapping on the Contacts button in the Settings -> Friends tab.
How do I get a custom icon or picture on the map?
Cell 411 uses Gravatar to assign custom icons to our users. If you have a Gravatar account under the same e-mail address you used when you signed up for Cell 411, the app will automatically use your default Gravatar. If you don’t use Gravatar, the app will simply use the standard logo to illustrate your presence on the map.
How do I issue a Cell 411 alert?
When you open Cell 411, you will see the Cell 411 icon or your Gravatar icon displayed at your current location on Google Maps. Tap on the icon to open the alerts menu and choose the alert you wish to issue. You will be prompted to choose the Cell or group of users to alert, and they will all be notified immediately, along with the time and your location. Users receiving the alert will be prompted to inform they intend to assist you, or to let you know that they are presently unable to help.
After you issue an alert, Cell 411 will also prompt you to start streaming live video to the group you alerted, allowing them to watch the live video stream from your device.
How do I pull up the "Know Your Rights" screen?
If you are in an encounter with the police and need a quick reminder about what your constitutional rights are, tap on the icon located in the lower left side of the map screen. It will bring up a small flyer with 5 bullet points and advice on what you should do during a police encounter.
Why does Cell 411 ask for my phone number and emergency contact information?
When you issue Cell 411 alerts, the people receiving your alerts will be prompted to call you or call your emergency contact in case of an emergency. This information is for that purpose only and you are not required to enter it into your account settings. Just keep in mind that others will have no other means to contact you if these fields are left blank.
What is Dispatch Mode?
Dispatch Mode is a feature in Cell 411 which allows you to dispatch alerts to your groups of friends. The feature is disabled by default and must be manually enabled in the Settings -> Options screen. Once enabled, you can operate a dispatcher for alerts. Rather than sending out an alert from your current location, Dispatch Mode will ask you to drop a pin on the map to the location where the event or emergency is taking place. Once you choose the exact location and send out an alert, your friends will be directed to the location you picked.
This feature can be used to de-centralize the management of emergencies and alerts, and it can be extremely useful for small communities, volunteer fire fighter departments, small villages or other organizations that lack the funding necessary to hire a full-time dispatcher to take calls or handle the routing of calls. The feature should be disabled once used, unless you want to operate as a full-time dispatcher for your groups of friends, neighbors, or community.
Why is my live video pixelated and poor quality?
The live video quality is largely dependent on the speed of your Internet connection. If you have a fast connection and a good quality smart phone, your video will look very good, however a slow internet connection or a poor cell phone signal will cause the app to buffer video a lot and encode it in lower quality, leading to a poor quality video.
How do I erase a video I streamed?
You cannot erase a previously streamed video through the Cell 411 interface. This is in order to protect your footage from a malicious users who may have stolen your phone in an effort to erase evidence of wrongdoing.
Cell 411 includes an optional “fake erase” button for situations where you are under duress or in a situation where police or other actors are forcing you to erase videoThe button will not actually erase the video but it will lead coercive individuals to believe that the video is gone and allow you to escape a potentially dangerous situation. The “fake erase” button must first be enabled in the Settings -> Options screen first before it becomes visible.
To erase a video permanently from our servers, please contact Cell 411 Support at firstname.lastname@example.org and include your e-mail address, and the alert date and time you wish to delete.
Why does Cell 411 require so many device permissions?
When you install Cell 411, you will be prompted to allow the app to have access to certain things, such as microphone, GPS, etc. All of these permissions are required for the app to function properly, and are explained here:
- Identity: Cell 411 needs to be able to make calls to the Google Maps API in order to load map data. This requires the Identity permission.
- Contacts: Cell 411 needs to be able to load your contacts and allow you to add them as friends.
- Location: Cell 411 needs to be able to determine your geographic location, either through network triangulation or by using GPS, in order to relay your location to selected contacts when you issue an alert.
- Phone: Cell 411 needs to be able to make phone calls to your contacts when they issue alerts.
- Photos / Media / Files: Cell 411 needs to be able to read and write to and from the file system in order to cache certain data, such as user icons and images.
- Camera: Cell 411 needs to be able to use your camera in order to stream and record live video when you issue an alert.
- Microphone: Cell 411 needs to able to use your microphone in order for sound to be included along with live streaming video.
Can I be held legally liable if I help someone?
Cell 411 is an app that puts the responsibility of your choices on you, the user, which is why we recommend you use caution when rendering help to others or seeking out help from others — especially when using Patrol Mode or issuing Global Alerts. Virtually every state in the United States has so-called “Good Samaritan Laws,” which offer civil and criminal protection for those offering medical and emergency aid in good faith. For users in other countries, we recommend that you research your local laws, and act accordingly with caution.
A good summary of “Good Samaritan Laws” by U.S. state can be found at recreation-law.com
How do I block a user that is sending too many alerts?
To mark someone as a ‘spammer’ go into the Settings -> Alerts tab and then tap on one of the alerts they issued. You will be prompted to mark him or her as a spammer, which means that you will no longer receive any alerts from them in the future.
How do I create a Cell?
Tap on the Settings icon and then go to the Cells tab. Once you tap on the Add Cell option, you can give your new cell a name (e.g., “My Family”) and then tap on the friends you wish to add to the Cell. Later on, you can choose the cell to alert when issuing alerts.
How to I re-center the map if I am in motion or my icon is no longer visible?
To re-center the map to your current location, you can tap the small map pin icon located in the lower right side of the screen.
How do I bring back a missed alert?
To review older alerts, go to the Settings -> Alerts tab and tap on the alert you want to review. Unfortunately missed alerts will not offer you turn-by-turn directions to a friend’s location as the alert or location may contain stale or outdated information.
What is Patrol Mode?
Patrol Mode is a feature in Cell 411 which allows you to receive and respond to alerts from users that are not in your contacts. When users decide to issue a “Global” alert, everyone within a 50 mile radius who has Patrol Mode enabled will receive the alert and be able to respond to it. This could be very useful in situations of natural disasters or should you find yourself stranded away from your home area without any friends being able to come and help you in a timely manner. You can enable Patrol Mode in the Settings -> Options tab, or by tapping the green icon on the main menu screen on the map. You can also adjust the radius for which you want Patrol Mode to function.
How do I start streaming video?
To start streaming live video, tap on the purple menu option with the camera icon on the main map screen in Cell 411. You will be prompted to choose the group to stream to. Make sure you orient your phone in landscape mode to avoid creating a video that is recorded sideways.
How do I watch my videos?
Your past videos will be visible in the Settings -> Alerts tab just like any other previously issued alert. Simply tap on the video alert and you will be prompted to watch the video.
How do I download a video I streamed?
You can download a video by going into the Settings -> Alerts screen and then tapping on the download icon next to a video alert. The video will download to your device in the default photo or video gallery.
Can the government track me through your app?
No. Cell 411 does not communicate any GPS coordinates to our servers until you issue an alert. Only when you issue an alert, your current GPS coordinates are temporarily stored in a database in order to be communicated to your friends. As long as you do not issue an alert, your coordinates are not communicated to any our servers. Furthermore, we do not give access to any outside entities to our servers, and we de-identify the data after a period of time, only storing the alert type and coordinates of the alert for reporting purposes. No names, numbers, or any other identifying data are stored long-term on our servers.
If you experience any issues with the app, have any questions, or just want to give us some feedback, use this form to get in touch.