Blog: Let's do something important this holiday season!

Blog: Let's do something important this holiday season!

We have an opportunity to do somethign really important this holiday season!

Last evening I was fortunate to be able to attend an excellent dinner meeting of the New York Chapter of SIM International at which Chris Sacca from Google spoke. For those of you who have not heard him speak, I recommend you check out his blog. He has a lot to say that is worthy of attention! At that meeting, unfortunately one member of the audience took ill, necessitating a call to 911 and all that entails. We all hope he will recover quickly and fully.

That event got me thinking about the matter of emergency contacts. Can we as CIOs take a break from issues around outsourcing, job searching, business relevance and the other matters that occupy so much of our time and try to address something really important - easy and quick identification of emergency contacts? So many family units do not share a single last name. More and more of us are using mobile phones as our primary phones, and no longer have a single 'family' phone number. In that environment, when an emergency occurs, how can strangers identify our emergency contacts? I am reminded of an email that made the rounds some months ago in which it was suggested that people establish an Outlook (or equivalent) contact named ICE, In Case of Emergency. But I neither did that nor recalled that until I was reminded.

So the challenge is this: Can we be a catalyst for establishing a standard location for emergency information, one that is easily identifiable on PDAs and mobile phones of all types? Can we promote that standard as a default address book entry in our corporate systems to promulgate the standard? My questions: 1. Does a standard exist? 2. If yes, how can we promote its use? 3. If not, can we propose a standard that is independent of software vendor or phone manufacturer? Can we keep it simple and easily implementable? 4. If we and others in a broader audience can agree, can we accelerate its adoption and implementation? Can we as CIOs make a true contribution to enhanced security this holiday season? I hope we are up to the challenge! Your thoughts? Bob Kotch

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