Ask the Experts – Introducing Active Presence™

Code Blue® Pioneers ACTIVE Presence™ – A New Category in the Public Safety and Security Market

“It’s not just a blue light phone anymore.”

Code Blue Help Points® bring Active Presence™ to Public Spaces.

For over thirty-five years Code Blue has had a highly visible, recognizable ‘passive presence’ across North America with its cylindrical, blue light phone towers, providing “help at the touch of a button” when needed, and an increased feeling of safety in public spaces. For the property owner, it has been the visible icon of their commitment to public safety. But as time has passed and technology has improved, you might ask, “Can’t they do more to make us safer?” The answer is, “Yes!”.

Based on input from security professionals, students, parents, and the property owner’s employees, it is clear that more needs to be done to protect and inform the public when they are in public spaces. In response to this growing outcry to do something, Code Blue is evolving to meet this demand, designing holistic systems that will transform passive systems into Active Presence™.

By using Code Blue’s Nebula Cloud to fuse the latest sensors, indicators and response technology into the ubiquitous blue-light phone devices, Code Blue is bringing Active Presence™ capabilities to open spaces in public places for the first time!

In all cases of threatening or unplanned events, or requests for assistance, seconds matter. Any immediate and intelligent action that can be taken to alter the course of events or provide immediate, relevant information can help achieve a more positive outcome for the public in that space, as well as for the property owner and responding personnel. So, Code Blue is pioneering new applications in its blue light Help Points® to bring this kind of Active Presence™ to Public Spaces by aggregating and integrating state-of-the-art technology into their existing and future models of their iconic blue light towers.

Strategically located Code Blue Help Points®, outfitted for their intended purpose in that space, enables the detection of anomalies or the collection of helpful information via numerous sensor and indicator technologies (substance detection, motion detection, audio and video analytics and more). These sensors and indicators are capable of simultaneously deploying multiple, immediate, dynamic actions to appropriately and immediately intervene in threatening situations well before anyone thinks to press a button, and well before responders arrive.

Introducing Active Presence™

Active Presence™ is powered by Nebula™, Code Blue’s cloud-native software platform with machine learning and automation capabilities designed to upgrade existing blue light towers, transforming them into intelligent, proactive systems that initiate responses when seconds matter. Active Presence™ enables the property owner to again raise their standard of care for the public on their property, and perceptively improve public mobility, public safety, and public security.

Code Blue has re-architected its communications platform to bring Active Presence to public spaces that will not only improve the perception of safety, but actually make people safer. By adding sensors to monitor open spaces and AI/Machine Learning to digitally detect anomalies, proactive, preemptive alerts and immediate responses can be initiated. Also, the longer these AI/Machine Learning devices are deployed, the more they learn about the space(s) that they protect and become more effective over time.

The ultimate goal of the Code Blue Active Presence Ecosystem™ is to create an environment which removes the vulnerability pedestrians often feel in a public space, while providing the capability to connect with the responsible agents of the property when and an unplanned event occurs. Strategically placed Help Points® of the future will constantly convey meaningful, location-specific sensory messages (visually and audibly as appropriate) to assure people that they are safe in that environment, and to be immediately alerted if, and when they may not be.

For the pedestrian, these units can provide immediate assistance or instruction through audio paging and speaker phones today, and will continue to evolve, providing immediate connection between pedestrians and the property owner’s agents responsible for the property, enabling everyone in the vicinity to be an informed and active part of an intelligent response when seconds matter.

For intruders considering criminal activity, the Code Blue Active Presence Ecosystem conveys to them that they are being monitored – so they think twice before acting. Should means of deterrence fail to redirect bad actors, Active Presence initiates and deploys immediate action to alter the course of events toward a more positive outcome, even before responders arrive.

D4 – Deterrence, Detection, Decisions, and Deployment

Solutions that provide Active Presence™ to Public Spaces are comprised of cloud-native integrations, automations, and workflows that enable a quick and intelligent response. Multi-faceted interactions can be initiated in real-time to improve the effectiveness of Deterrence, Detection, Decisions, and Deployment, (D4). The net result positively affects public mobility, public safety and security, public engagement, public perception, and ultimately protects and helps people.

Deterrence is achieved through the presence of highly visible blue light towers and wall mounted units that are strategically located and purposefully outfitted with audio and video IoT devices that serve their intended purpose in that space. When bad actors know that these units are capable of detecting anomalies, immediately alerting appropriate responders, playing audible alarms, and alerting the public, there is an increased probability that the course of bad actors is altered, and opportunity is denied.

Detection is the ability to sense, recognize and produce in real-time, location-specific actionable information, encompassing capabilities to Monitor, Track, Analyze, Predict, and Verify through autonomous methods and human interaction. Through an array or combination of sensors and system inputs, Code Blue Help Points® bring Active Presence™ to the space in which it is located, and to the responsible agents and responders of the property owner. Examples of Detection include:

  • life safety (fire and emergency)
  • environmental threats (water, humidity, weather)
  • public safety and human engagement (calls for help, public’s reporting of observations)
  • security (alarms, gun detection, crowd gatherings, license plate recognition)
  • audio analytics (sense cries for help, a catalytic converter being sawed off, glass breaks)
  • video surveillance (unexpected movement, gate or door ajar)

To be trusted, Detection must be immediate and reliable, so a prime objective is to eliminate false positives through video, audio, and human verification. Active Presence not only provides awareness of what is happening, but can also send alerts regarding what is not happening that should be happening. Blue Alert® Monitor gives property owners peace of mind that everything is as it should be, and should there be a device failure, it will immediately alert responsible parties to investigate.

Decisions to Deploy – When seconds matter, human decisions to deploy an intelligent response are critical. People make better decisions when they have better information. Verified information enables confident decisions to deploy an intelligent action or a message. However, humans need time to discern and decide what to do. Some of these decisions to respond can be pre-programmed and initiated immediately utilizing Active Presence™ technology from Code Blue, shortening the time between detection and deployment. Examples of automatic decisions to deploy can include:

  • AI detects a brandished gun, and in the time-frame between the initial alert and human verification, trained personnel on site can receive notifications of a pending threat, and additional deployments can be initiated
  • When aggression or a scream is detected, personnel can be alerted to de-escalate the situation before anyone thinks to push a button
  • Automatically play pre-programed announcements in areas where unauthorized activity is detected (cars or people gathering where or when they should not be)
  • Automatically flash lights and/or warning signals
  • Automatically time stamp the event recording, including the preceding 30 seconds of audio and video leading up to the event
  • Automatically connect the event to a call center for human response

Deployment encompasses many means of Response, initiations of appropriate Action, and receiving Confirmation of what has taken place. Response plans can be designed and scripted such as activation of public address systems (for free-form or pre-recorded instructions), smart lighting, deployment of drones, and any other anticipated response needs. Actions can consist of call routing to first responders and law enforcement, general communications to the public, and 1to1 communications to visitors, patrons, employees, students, and contractors. Additionally, Confirmation refers to feedback loops through technology, signals, or dialog (smart devices, 2-way speakers, texting) that confirm to the public and responders that Actions have indeed been initiated.

Active Presence™ – Configured and Equipped for the Space. Bundled features for its Purpose.

Active Presence Solutions are not a ‘one size fits all’ complete package for all places and spaces. Code Blue Help Points® need to be configured and equipped for the space and the purpose it is intended to serve. Active Presence Solutions are offered as a bundle of optional features and benefits, configured to address the unique needs of the property owner, creating a holistic, tailored system that serves the needs of all stakeholders, helping to save lives and improve customer experience.

Executive Summary – Active Presence™ from Code Blue ….. A Higher Standard of Care

  1. Code Blue has a rich, thirty-five year history of innovative, high-quality campus safety solutions across North America and beyond.
  2. To address the public’s demand to do more to improve public mobility and public safety, Code Blue is pioneering a new market category, bringing Active Presence™ to Public Spaces.
  3. Property owners that want to promote their brand and reputation, while increasing their standard of care and connection for pedestrians in their space, now have a highly visible way of doing just that.  Creating an Active Presence™ Ecosystem enables the property owner to provide peace of mind and improved mobility for the pedestrian on their site.
  4. Active Presence includes a cloud-native software platform with machine learning and automation capabilities designed to help transform the blue-light phone market into intelligent systems that help Deter bad actors, Detect anomalies, and improve Decisions to Deploy.
  5. Code Blue Help Points® are configured and equipped for the space and purpose it is intended to serve. 
  6. Active Presence technologies reduce false positives through digital and/or human verification.
  7. Active Presence Solutions are offered as a bundle of optional features and benefits, configured to create an Active Presence Ecosystem, addressing the unique needs of the property owner.  This creates a holistic, tailored system that helps save lives, improves public mobility and enhances the customer experience.

We hope you share Code Blue’s excitement about bringing Active Presence™ to Public Spaces. Please consider contacting Code Blue for help ( to make your Active Presence Solution come to life.