Aim: The aim of this article is to present the results of the initial research aiming at gathering civilian population’s opinions on whether it is necessary and possible to introduce into common use smart-phone and desktop applications for real-time threat warning. The data collected, following their verification and authorisation by the relevant dispatch centre, will become part of the system of monitoring, warning and alarming about possible threats.

Project and methods: In the research use was made of the diagnostic survey method for the collection of data. With an appropriate technique, this method makes it possible to survey a large group of respondents relatively fast and reliably. In this case, the technique employed was the questionnaire. The tool developed for this questionnaire consisted of seven content-related questions designed to investigate into people’s opinions on whether there was a need for designing an app to provide a greater level of citizen involvement in disseminating information on threats.

Results: The results suggest that the respondents showed interest in the tool’s being designed, and a relatively good understanding of how it should essentially work. Obviously, there were some discrepancies in the responses with regard to its final form and function. The responses indicating that this tool will primarily be used by the services, inspections, brigades and guards might be a cause for concern, although it seems that these answers result from a lack of knowledge and awareness on the part of the respondents. A public awareness campaign and in-app instructions should be sufficient to change this perception.

Conclusions: An analysis of the survey results has led to the following conclusions: – There is a need to develop an interactive app which would allow civilians to become actively involved in the process of monitoring threats; – It seems necessary to establish units (dispatch centres), to verify the information received at the local level, i.e. in districts (powiat). – An extremely important element in the process of implementing the application for general use is to prepare the public in terms of the relevant knowledge, and volitional and ethical aspects; – The application should have a clear manual and tutorial. It is recommended to develop analogous and fully compatible versions of the app for mobile and stationary devices; – It is also necessary to convince the public of the need and purposefulness of using the application.

Keywords: monitoring of threats, threat, warning, alarm, crisis management system

Type of article: case study