Answers to frequently asked questions about CU Boulder Alerts.
Text Message Alerts
Text message alerts are real-time CU Alerts sent via our text messaging service in case of a campus emergency.
Types of text alerts may include:
- Campus closures or delayed starts
- Extreme weather
- Natural disasters
- Active harmer on campus
- Time-sensitive life safety concerns
- Other on-campus emergencies
All active CU Boulder students, faculty, staff and affiliates are either automatically registered or are invited to register to use the CU Boulder Alerts service.
CU Boulder student email addresses (@colorado.edu) are automatically added to the CU Boulder Alerts. We encourage students to add mobile phone numbers for text alert capability. During course registration periods, students have the options to add, modify or remove a mobile number within their MyCUInfo portal. This mobile number is added to the CU Boulder Alerts database. See the student step-by-step guide on how to update your information.
- Faculty and staff:
Faculty and staff email addresses (@colorado.edu) are automatically added to the CU Boulder Alerts. We encourage faculty and staff to add mobile phone numbers for text alert capability. At any time, faculty and staff can log in to the MyCUInfo portal and update their emergency text alert mobile information. See the employee step-by-step guide on how to update your information.
University partners with @cu.edu, @cufund.org, @cusys.edu, @ucdenver.edu or @cuanschutz.edu email domains must still register and maintain their information at the CU Boulder Alerts sign-up page.
Affiliates who are not a student, faculty or staff and do not have one of the emails domains listed above can work with the CU Boulder Alert administrator to be sure you are in the alert database. Please contact the IT Support Center for further assistance by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303-735-4357.
Fortunately, the campus does not use the CU Boulder Alerts system very often. In some academic terms, the only messages sent to the campus have been a system test message. Situations where CU Boulder Alerts email and text messages could be issued include severe weather, campus operating status and imminent dangers affecting our campus community.
Users are encouraged to add 226-787, 672-83 and 303-492-4636 as “CU Alert” to their phone contacts to help identify incoming text and/or voice calls. Email messages will be from “email@example.com.”
Should your mobile number change, you can make the updates online.
- Students can modify their mobile number by going to MyCUInfo portal.
- Faculty and staff can their mobile number by going to MyCUInfo portal.
- Partners please visit the CU Boulder Alerts sign up page to sign up and manage your emergency notification information.
- Affiliates must contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303-735-4357.
The emergency text alert system supports all U.S. mobile carriers.One of the benefits of automatic uploads of student, faculty and staff mobile numbers is the ability for the system to validate and update carrier information on a regular basis. For those partners that register through RAVE, you must still update your carrier information when you change numbers or carriers.
You may not have completed the new registration process launched in March 2017.
Please complete the employee steps listed here or the student steps listed here and your number will be added to the alerts database during the nightly upload. Pay special attention to add the new phone type Emergency Text Alert Mobile 1 or 2, even if you already have the number you intend to use listed as a cellular phone type. You must enter it again to be captured by the alerts database.
- Students do not have a username as they do not have access to the website.
- Faculty and staff do not have a username as they do not have access to the website.
- Partners username should be your CU affiliated email address and the password you set when you initially registered.
- Affiliates must contact email@example.com or call 303-735-4357.
CU Boulder transferred the management of your contact information from the CU Boulder Alerts sign-up page website to the MyCUInfo portal as part of the fall 2013 registration process. This switch is to ensure all actively enrolled students are capable of receiving email and text emergency notifications starting May 1, 2013. Any information you entered during registration replaced what you previously had in the CU Alert system.
"Emergency Contact” information is used in the event the university needs to contact someone on your behalf should you be involved in or experience a health or safety emergency
No. Only CU Boulder community members with a valid colorado.edu (or cufund.org, or cu.edu) email address or those that conduct business regularly on campus and have the support of their supporting office, department, or school can register. The CU Boulder Alerts service is only one of several communication and information sources utilized at CU Boulder. There are several other sources for emergency information including the campus homepage and the emergency information line, 303-492-4636.
Opting out of the text alert portion of the system is strongly discouraged, as the information provided by CU Boulder Alerts can save your life during an emergency, threatening situation, or at the very least keep you from coming to campus on a snow closure day.
- Students can choose to opt out by marking the “I elect to opt out of the Emergency Notification System” checkbox during the registration process, or by contacting the Office of the Registrar throughout the year.
- Faculty, staff and affiliates can choose to opt out by not slecting a mobile number to be used for emergency text alerts in their MyCUInfo portal.
Active students, faculty, and staff cannot unsubscribe from the CU Boulder Alerts program. Your CU email will always remain registered and used to provide timely warnings and/or emergency notifications for situations that represent a serious or continuing threat to the campus community.
- Students can manage your emergency notification information by contacting the Office of the Registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Faculty and staff can manage your emergency text alert information in your MyCUInfo portal page.
- Partners can manage your CU Boulder Alerts information by visiting the CU Boulder Alerts sign up page.
- Affiliates please contact email@example.com or call 303-735-4357 for further assistance.
If you were a student, faculty or staff and are no longer affiliated with CU Boulder, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303-735-4357 for further assistance.
- Active students who have questions about registration or opt-in/opt-out status, contact the Office of the Registrar at email@example.com or call 303-492-6970.
- Inactive students should contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303-735-4357.
- Faculty, staff, partners and affiliates should contact email@example.com or call 303-735-4357.
Opt-In to Alerts by Keyword
If you are an employee or student, you do not need to opt in by keyword. Opting in by keyword is for CU Boulder affiliates and for parents of children who attend the CU Boulder Children Center.
Affiliates who are not students, faculty or staff and do not have a CU email domain (@cu.edu, @cufund.org, @cusys.edu, @ucdenver.edu or @cuanschutz.edu) can opt in to CU Boulder Alerts to receive text alerts by texting “cuaffiliate” to 67283 to be opted in to CU Boulder Alerts. Your registration will expire one year after you opt in and you will be required to reregister each year to remain a member. You may text “STOP” at any time to 67283 to be removed. As a member of CU Boulder Alerts, you will receive text notifications for campuswide events.
At any time you may end your subscription to CU Boulder Alerts keyword groups by texting "LEAVE " to 67283 for the specific group you wish to leave. The two options currently in use at CU Boulder are cuaffilliate and cuchild. If you reply "STOP" to 67283 that will now remove you from all CU Boulder Alerts which also includes alerts you may receive as an employee or student.
Please be aware that this will suspend your number from any text from Rave Mobile Safety (the vendor we use for text messaging) and could impact your ability to receive other text alerts from other entities using Rave Mobile Safety as their vendor. It is best to only leave the lists you wish to be removed from. You can reply "LIST" to see all opt-in lists that you are subscribed to. If you have replied "STOP" and still wish to receive messages, you may reply "START" to enable SMS messaging again.
Alertus Desktop Alerts
Alertus is an emergency messaging desktop client that is a new method of disseminating critical information on all university owned assets. In the event of an emergency, this service will issue a pop-up message to computers with emergency messaging desktop client installed.
Alertus is a vendor of alerting technology and systems. While they offer many options, CU Boulder has procured their emergency messaging desktop feature. This feature allows a safety administrator to launch an alert, which will cause any registered computer to be overridden with a screen pop-up message. The message can be tailored to the situation and the recipient is forced to hit a “Dismiss” button in order to close the window.
Alertus is able to be integrated into our current dashboard provided by RAVE, allowing the continuation of using just one system to launch alerts via multiple channels. Alertus requires a client to be downloaded and installed on each computer to establish a connection to the Alertus server and be able to receive alerts. The software has been evaluated by OIT Security and is currently in the planning stages for deployment. The deployment will be a combination of automated distribution, individual installation and voluntary download for non-university property if the owner so chooses to do so.
Only situations that represent a “significant emergency or dangerous situation involving an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees occurring on the campus” will utilize the “pop-up” method of communication to those with the emergency messaging desktop client installed. This service will only be used when absolutely necessary. If you have questions or concerns, please submit a ServiceNow ticket and IT Service Center will contact you to assist.
It will always have the CU Boulder logo and specify it is a “CU Boulder Alert.”
Yes. As long as you have installed the client and have your computer online, the Alertus server will attempt to deliver the pop-up alert to your desktop even if you are not on the wired or wireless CU Boulder network.
Emergency messaging desktop clients will be an integrated method of communications within the CU Boulder Alerts program and will help meet the requirements of providing emergency notifications and timely warnings as required by the Clery Act. In an effort to maximize safety and the protection of our campus community, all university-owned workstations should have the emergency messaging desktop client installed on it. This will ensure the widest dissemination possible for the CU Boulder Alerts program and provide additional coverage in areas where cellular signal is degraded.
The emergency messaging desktop client will currently work on Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 with the .NET 2.0 Framework (or greater) installed and Mac OSX 10.5+. Your machine will need at least 7 MBs of free hard disk space, network connectivity and administrative permission for installation.
If it is deemed the emergency messaging desktop client could negatively impact special software or computing functions, it is not required for the client to be installed. However, this product should not compete with computing resources and has been tested to be safe for installation. It can always be uninstalled if problems arrise.
No. This client is for desktop use only. While the vendor may release versions in the future that are able to be used on mobile devices and/or tablets, the CU Boulder IT Service Center will not support such installations, and the user will need to contact Alertus directly for assistance. To be sure you get alerts on your mobile device, employees and students can find directions on the CU Boulder Alerts site to ensure you are registered and your information is up to date.
While the system does keep a log of computers alerted and if a user “Dismissed” the message, this information will not be actively monitored or used as a normal process within the CU Boulder Alerts program.
No. The client’s only function is to listen to its server for an alert and then process that alert into a pop-up message. No user statistics or monitoring are performed.
The emergency messaging desktop client module, a part of the CU Boulder Alerts program, shall be managed collaboratively by the CU Boulder Police Department (CUPD) and the Office of Information Technology (OIT)
Alertus Recipient App
The Alertus Recipient App allows end users to receive push notifications from the CU Boulder Alerts utilizing Wi-Fi and/or cellular signal.
No. It will be exactly the same as the text messages.
Sometimes a text message will not reach your device if you are in poor cellular signal range, like in the interior of some of the buildings on campus. However, if you are in range of Wi-Fi then you should receive this new push notification.
Do I need to sign up for a subscription to get CU Boulder Alerts with the Alertus app?
Active CU Boulder students, faculty, and staff as well as partners and approved affiliates can download and install the app. It will not be available for non-CU Affiliates.
Users can easily download and install the Recipient App from the iOS App Store or Google Play store.
- Find and download the Alertus + (not the Alertus Activator).
- CU Boulder’s organization code is cuboulder
- Use your @colorado.edu, cu.edu, cufund.org, cusys.edu, or ucdenver.edu email address to complete the registration process
Yes. It works on all apple and google mobile devices
No. It is designed for those that routinely find themselves in areas with poor celluar signal range or those who have mobile device plans that rely heavily on Wi-Fi rather than signal strength like Republic Wireless and Google's Project Fi.
- Some users are reporting a status of offline server which may prevent the user from receiving push notifications from the alertus service.
- This is only for mobile devices and does not impact desktop notifications.
- The solution for now is to delete the app from your phone, wait 15 minutes, reinstall the app and reregister your phone and groups. It is not the solution we were hoping for and Alertus is hopeful they can find a long term fix that may avoid individual action, but for now it is what it is.
- If your app reports online there are no actions to take for now.
No. While the Alertus Recipient App offers an incident reporting feature, the University of Colorado Boulder has shut off that feature and ask you to please dial 9-1-1 if there is a safety incident you would like to report.
Guardian Mobile Safety App
Guardian is a mobile safey application produced by Rave Mobile Safety, the same vendor who supports the backbone of CU Boulder Alerts. Guardian provides the user:
- A new method to recieve CU Boulder Alerts
- Access to crisis support phone numbers
- A safety timer allowing friends and family to monitor the user and call for help as needed
- Access to safety resource websites
- Quick access to call CU Boulder Police in non-emergency situations
Guardian is only available to current CU Boulder students, staff and faculty. If you currently recieve CU Boulder Alerts you can also sign up for Guardian.
Guardian is available at the App Store or Google Play. Simply search for “Rave Guardian” and download the app to your mobile device. Then follow the instructions to complete the setup.
Yes. The app is optional and does not replace the ability for users to call CU Boulder Police at 303-492-666 or city of Boulder police at 911.
Rave allows organizations to tailor the features available in Guardian for its users. CU Boulder has chosen some features over others at this time in hopes of achieving the best experience for the user. CU Boulder will continue to evaluate both user experiances and app improvements and add features if they will benefit the community.