For the first time, Facebook Inc (FB) activated the “Safety Check” option in the United States, as a response to notify users if their family and friends were safe during the Orlando massive shooting.

Safety Check is essentially an option that appears in the Facebook home pages of users in a determined location when there is an emergency situation or a dangerous event. It was activated in France, Belgium, Nigeria, India, among others, to allow users to mark if they were safe during a tense situation.

The massive shooting in Orlando, Florida

Fifty people were killed, and more than other 50 were wounded during an attack in a nightclub in Orlando, Pulse Florida Nightclub, last Sunday. So far, this is the mass shooting with the biggest amount of casualties and injuries in the U.S. history.

The gunman, already identified as Omar Mateen of 29 years old, was an American citizen that claimed allegiance to the Islamic State, during a phone call he made to the 911 minutes before the attack. His parents were from Afghanistan. The investigation made on the subject in previous years showed no traces or links between Mr. Mateen and terrorist cells.

“The F.B.I. first became aware of him in 2013 when he made inflammatory comments to co-workers alleging possible terrorist ties, but could not find any incriminating evidence,” said Agent Hopper from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

It is considered that the attack is not related to ISIS, but instead, it was the result of personal sympathy of the attacker with the radical group’s ideals. Authorities have not stated about this matter. However, ISIS claimed responsibility for the massacre.

The group stated in an encrypted phone app of jihadist propaganda “the attack was carried out by an Islamic State fighter.”

This is the second attack of this nature, after the shooting in San Bernardino, California that ended up in 14 people killed.

The guns used in the attack were legally acquired by Mr. Mateen. He opened fired at a famous gay club at 2 a.m. People in the club ran towards the street, but more that 100 people received gun shots. So far, only seven names were released on the special web page created by the City of Orlando.

Facebook tries to help

To Facebook, the tool is an attempt to build and offer a useful mechanism to people living or staying in Florida, to inform whether they or others they know, are safe, to family and friends in other cities.

Most people thanked Facebook for implementing the tool.

Source: NY Times