News

30 Mar 2020

Secure Messaging: free to use during Covid-19 pandemic


Secure Messaging: free to use during Covid-19 pandemic

 

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting social distancing and isolation, we are making our Secure Messaging service available to local authorities and other organisations who need to stay in touch with vulnerable people.

There will be no cost for using this service, for a minimum of three months.

The service is already used by a number of local authorities to keep in touch young people who are leaving local authority care. It is safe, secure and puts you in complete control. It meets security and data protection standards that other third party messaging tech do not and it can help keep those crucial channels of communication open between vulnerable people and your team  - even more important now given the isolation that people face and the difficult circumstances in which teams are operating.

Secure Messaging can be accessed through any internet connected device including smartphone and tablet and requires no install of software, just an up-to-date browser.

Your team will be able to hold private one-to-one conversations, or group chats with a selected group of users. You can also exchange photos, files and documents. With one message you’ll be able to check if hundreds of people are ok.

Why are we doing this?
Through our work, building websites and apps for local authorities for over ten years, we have met and worked with lots of vulnerable people including children in care, families with disabled children, care leavers and victims of domestic abuse. As a tech company who are all currently working from home, we felt digital should play a key role in making sure vulnerable people are safe and well, and by making it free to use for a minimum of three months we hope that as many organisations can take our offer as possible.


What happens after three months?
If we are very honest, we don’t know (who does?!). Things change so quickly at the moment that it is very difficult to know what the next three months will bring. We may continue the free service, or we may offer the service on a paid basis, or we may offer an alternative, or bespoke, service on a paid basis. But there will be absolutely no obligation for anyone to buy anything and anyone who has used Secure Messaging for three months will be free to walk away with no commitment.


Interested?
If you are a local authority, charity, housing association or any organisation that works with and supports vulnerable people, and you think you would benefit from using this service then please get in touch.

Or email us: messaging@focusgov.co.uk.

Please tell us who you are, a little about the vulnerable people you support and how many people you think you'd like to use with service with. We will need anyone who signs up to agree a Terms of Service, which is available on request.

We will look at every case independently and provide as many of you with access to the service, but there may be exceptional circumstances where we are unable to do this, and in these cases our decision is final.


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