When a child goes missing, an Amber Alert is issued.
The goal is to get the information to as many people as quickly as possible.
Now, there’s an alert that would be sent directly to your phone, but Indiana State Police don’t think it’s a good idea.
Time is critical when a child is missing.
"The media has always been very good about getting information out, said Indiana State Police Captain Dave Bursten. “For example, we just had the little girl in Indianapolis that had run away."
While an Amber Alert wasn't issued for the runaway, when one is activated for an abducted child, messages scroll across moving billboards over the highway.
Now, there's a new alert, and it's on your phone.
“It's a loud audible sound and it will startle you,” Bursten said.
The FCC created this alert system that reaches 97% of the population.
Bursten says the problem is it's not up to you if you want to be notified. It’s automatic.
"Our concern is that if you're driving, you may be startled by that sound, could lose control of your car. The least issue may be getting involved in a property damage accident or you might be involved in something more serious that results in injury or death."
Distracted drivers are always a concern for police, and Bursten says an unexpected jarring noise from your phone would take the driver's attention away from where it should be – on the road.
"The state of Indiana decided not to participate in that version of the Amber Alert notification, so we turned that application off."
ISP is looking into its own mobile alert system.
Police say the system would probably come across as a text message, and cell phone users would have to opt into the system to get the alerts.