Digital Police is a new ambitious project developed by Roman Melnyk and Roman Kotlyar. In a nutshell Digital Police is your pocket personal security.

Roman Melnyk (co-founder and coordinator of Young Generation Will Change Ukraine Program) is talking about the idea of a startup and the plans of its developing.

How did the idea emerge?

Everything started2x_romans in 2013 when I won the first Open Data Hackathon in Ukraine organized by SocialBoost and supported by Microsoft. My project was about creating the first interactive crime-map for Ukraine using police open data and web-technologies. As a political science student at that time I came up with that idea partly spontaneously and instead of suggesting to the organizers idea of visualizing budget expenditures, I choose crime topic and it was a huge success. After winning the hackathon I organized a few small closed hackathon for my own project to improve it. Thus we created the first heatmap of crime trends for Kyiv city. During one of these stages I got acquainted with the future co-founder of Digital Police Roman Kotlyar.

We were linked with Roman not only due to the work on crime maps during hackathons, but also connected with many other projects. We constantly exchanged the experience and information, as I work in civic-political sphere and think as a political scientist, and Roman Kotlyar is a visionary and product designer.

After Euromaidan the idea to work with police wasn’t actual enough and the open data wasn’t so accessible. The police could send us the general picture on crime trends in response to the request on access to the public information, but the data was incorrect and invalid quite often.

In February 2016 the first Open Data Incubator, symbolically named 1991, was launched by the enthusiasm of Denys Gursky – the founder of SocialBoost. Together with Roman Kotlyar we applied with the idea of helping Ukrainian police by creating for them digital services such as: crime maps, predicting policing, analytics, etc. During the incubator we have listened to dozens of cool lectures on entrepreneurship and when we were thinking about startups it was getting much more difficult to think just in frames of helping the police. Roman Kotlyar then took the mission of visioning and designing a new security product which could be a successful startup. The point is that Roman has a huge experience in creating not just mere startup ideas but prototypes and the whole consumer way of a product. That is why in a few weeks he came up with the well thought out product. We decided with a team to accept a new line of development suggested by our creative visionary. That is how Digital Police appeared. We instantly refocused from the previous initiative to help the police into the creating the global security startup demanded in the big cities around the world.

What’s the idea?

Idea is quite simple: you as a user will have installed Digital Police app on your smartphone and a widget which will notify you about everything quite dangerous

roman_melnyk_withUSAPolice or suspicious that’s happening or could happen. The app will also give you a possibility to create the circle of the closest people and have an option to see where are they and check whether they are in safety. In a case of emergency or danger – the app could without any button clicking automatically warn the closest persons about a hazard. We foresaw the whole package of tools and functions which could help to identify the risk precisely and undertake the necessary actions. The app can really safe the health and the lives of our users.  There will be also developed a special version of the app for parents to track their kids and know if they are secure.

What about the widget? It’s our feature which allows  you to help the others just by reporting somewhat dangerous or suspicious. Let’s say you noticed some suspicious group of people in the park. It’s too problematic to call the police. But you can use our widget and quickly report about it the community. That will help others to be more aware and careful and in the same time will foster people to do “neighborhood watching”.

Our further plans

We are still developing the app, but have truly ambitious plan – to reach 500 mln users in the coming years and become a preinstalled app on most smartphones of the world as the best security app.

That is the case how you can start changing the world beginning with a dream of changing Ukraine.