Saturday, December 18, 2010

MCSD continues to misuse NIXLE

On Wednesday the McHenry County Sheriff's Department issued yet another needless NIXLE message, informing County residents of mail thefts in "Western McHenry County."

That tells you a lot, doesn't it? Like, just exactly where in "western" McHenry County?

Why didn't they use NIXLE as designed and merely inform residents in the immediate area of the thefts?

Or let the USPS take care of it?

Or rely on the newspapers to remind all residents? Mail thefts occur every holiday season!

Where is the Sheriff? Is he even in town? Or is he in Cape Coral? Or Minocqua? Remember, it is your newly-elected sheriff who is supposed to be running the Department. Does he even have a clue as to how NIXLE is being used? What's the CALEA standard here?

MCSD is going to wear out residents when it pinches the NIXLE wolf over minor crimes. Residents will ignore NIXLE messages and then possibly miss something really important.

Will it begin notifying the public if an employee misuses the "color of the office" to commit a crime inside the building housing the sheriff's department and then leaves work at the end of the shift to circulate outside those walls with the general public? Now there would be a good use of NIXLE!


Steve said...

How would they send it to just the people affected? I've watched this for awhile and you just seem to get irrational whenever the sheriff's office does ANYTHING. What's the problem? Everyone that signs up for nixel does it because they want the information and, I suspect, anyone who doesn't want this stuff is smart enough to find the DELETE key or discontinue the service. I don't think it's just me, but this and the recent plea for assistance in the bank robbery over in McHenry seems to be the ideal use of Nixel.

Gus said...

Steve, some community alert systems are designed to allow the sender to notify selected portions of the community; e.g., if there is a gas leak on the north end of a city, you don't have to warn the residents in the south part of the city.

If a bank robber is headed my way, tell me; you don't have to tell the whole County. In fact, I don't recall seeing an email from McHenry P.D. about a bank robbery, only a text message that a bank was robbed. No car description; no robbers described; no direction of travel. What good is a text message like that?

BTW, I AM smart enough to delete my NIXLE account, if I choose to. It's more fun to take shots at the stupidity for how the system is actually used.

The Usual Suspect said...

I think Nixle is different that what you are talking about Gus. There is a reverse 911 system but that is different from Nixle. That system has the ability to target specific areas. I think Nixle goes to everyone that susbscribes.

Down where I live ( southern state) the Sheriff has a system that sends messages. I know it can do daily checks on homebound people. The system calls and if there is no reply by pressing 1 or 2 on the phone touch tone someone is notified to follow up. Friend reative etc. If some leaves for a day or two it can be deactivated somehow.