Warren Myers, Founder and innovator of safety technology app AURA, believes there’s a critical need for better access to security in South Africa. Upon this principle, Warren founded the AURA app in 2017 after him and his partner, at the time, seized an opportunity to improve CCTV monitoring at their company.

“Crimes happen extremely fast,” Warren says. “If you can’t get someone out there immediately, time and resources are wasted, and justice is not served. This is what ignited AURA as a panic button solution.”

Today, AURA functions as an innovative digital response network comprised of more than a hundred independent armed response providers. Responders in the past have showed a lack of cohesion, often compromising their ability to provide customers with instantaneous and consolidated national response coverage. AURA solves this through creating one powerful national security response “organism” to which customers have immediate access. All they have to do is push the alarm button which then activates a distress signal that is sent out to over 1 500 armed responders. The closest response vehicle is immediately dispatched to the scene, without an alert room controller disrupting the process. 

On the backend, AURA constantly absorbs data to continuously improve its service. “The magic of AURA is really going to shine once we have a large base of users providing Big Data, which we can use to drastically improve our service,” explains Warren. “We want to achieve this ‘snowball’ effect whereby more users result in better services, resulting in more customers. We believe with the right amount of data and artificial intelligence (AI), we can begin the exciting journey of predicting incidents of crime.” AURA aims to sell its services to corporates with large databases and vast distribution. Uber is already on board.

AURA’s overarching vision is to reduce violent crime in South Africa by 50% by 2025 using Big Data and AI.

Read more in the March/April issue of Fast Company South Africa.

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