Campus Notification

McMaster's Campus Mass Notification system is now available to everyone.

Security Services is now using the Send Word Now Alert system to communicate campus notifications for all students and staff.

In the event of an emergency on campus, the Security Office or delegated University Manager will be able to send a message to all McMaster email accounts. Messages will be sent by email to your "mcmaster.ca" account. You can also register to receive these messages on your personal email account. Click on the links below for registration instructions. You may also register your cellular phone number to receive non-emergency campus alerts.

*NEW* Sign up for Campus Notification has now been moved to Mosiac! Please use the link below for instructions on how to enroll:

Campus Notification for Students, Staff and Faculty

Report on Campus Notification Testing

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Send Word Now?
Send Word Now is the latest addition to McMaster University's campus notification system. It will be activated during situations that pose an imminent, ongoing campus-wide threat or danger to the safety of the McMaster community, such as a tornado forecasted to strike McMaster within minutes or an active shooter at large on campus. Send Word Now is a free service that runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Send Word Now is one part of a larger system in place at McMaster to notify the campus of emerging situations. In addition to Send Word Now, the system includes the outdoor siren warning system, use of the University Web site and the Campus LCD Screens located in all buildings.


How will Send Word Now notify me of an emerging situation?
Send Word Now will send messages to all McMaster students, staff and faculty via their McMaster email address and other emails that are provided via registration.


What situations will trigger the Send Word Now system?

Send Word Now is designed to alert members of the McMaster Community by email during an incident that poses an imminent, ongoing campus wide threat or danger to the community. This could include events such as a tornado forecast to strike the campus or an active shooter at large on campus.

Send Word Now may also be used to send alerts of an important, but less urgent nature to members of the campus community by email and text-message. These events may include notifications about evacuation of buildings, and campus closures during operating hours due to weather or utility (water, heating etc) events.

Send Word now will NOT be used for general crime alerts or for campus announcements, class reminders, news or advertisements.


How do I sign up?
All McMaster students, staff and faculty with a valid "mcmaster.ca" email address are automatically enrolled. You may add additional email addresses for emergency alerts and a cellular number to receive non-emergency alerts. Information on how to register can be found here. When you leave McMaster, your registration may remain active for up to one term before your information is automatically removed.


Why should I list more than one device when subscribing to Send Word Now?
Redundant, overlapping and consistent communication is an important component of any notification plan. Send Word Now is designed to facilitate early notification during emerging situations. Sending the same messages using multiple modes and methods helps assure that those affected have access to warning messages and alerts to help keep them safe.


How do I know if I am signed up?
You will receive a test message each academic term.


Will my information be kept private?
Yes, the information that you put into the Send Word Now system is private and will not be shared with anyone or used for any purpose other than campus notification.


When should I expect to receive notifications?
The Send Word Now system will be tested periodically. During a test you will receive a test message from Send Word Now. This will allow us to ensure the system is functioning properly and users are receiving the messages. Other than those test messages, Send Word Now will only notify you when there is an imminent threat or danger to your safety.


What will happen when Send Word Now is activated?
Send Word Now will begin sending thousands of emails simultaneously to subscribers' devices. When you receive a message, read the message carefully and follow the instructions it contains. Additional instructions may follow throughout the situation, so keep your device accessible.


How will I know when a call or message is from Send Word Now?
Emails sent via Send Word Now will come from "McMaster University "
Non-emergency text messages will appear from the following short-code: 38672


Does Send Word Now work with my mobile phone provider?
Send Word Now can contact any phone number, regardless of the service provider.


Will we still receive campus-wide e-mails about emerging situations on campus?
Yes. Send Word Now is an addition to McMaster's mass notification tools, which include mass e-mails, Outdoor Warning System, and more. Those tools will continue to be used for the situations that warrant their use.


Am I required to sign up for Send Word Now?
Your McMaster University email is automatically enrolled and it is not voluntary. You are encouraged to register and provide additional email addresses for emergency alerts and a mobile number to receive non-emergency alerts, but this is completely voluntary.


My parents / spouse / children want to receive campus notification. Can they sign up?
Send Word Now is limited to members of the McMaster community and requires a valid McMaster email address.


Why is text messaging used only for "non-emergency" alerts?
While text messaging is one way that Send Word Now can send out alerts, the effectiveness of text-messaging is inherently limited by the capacity of mobile service providers to deliver these messages. The CWTA (Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association) which represents all the mobile service providers in Canada, has indicated that one or more providers are unwilling to support any SMS short codes that are used for emergency notification.

You can read more about this here: https://www.cwta.ca/for-consumers/text-messaging/

If you do register and provide your cellular phone number to receive these non-emergency alerts, you will sign a virtual waiver (by clicking) stating that you understand that any messages sent to you by SMS are not guaranteed, and that you are responsible for any fees charged by your service provider for these messages.


What is the technical backbone of Send Word Now?
The University has contracted with Send Word Now, an international company based in the USA, to provide alerts to our campus.  Send Word Now uses computer servers and telephone data centres located at Canadian locations in Toronto and Vancouver.  All information provided to McMaster University remains confidential, and secure.


Questions or Comments?
If you have any questions about the Send Word Now, please send a message to security@mcmaster.ca or call McMaster University Security Services at x24281