About AMBER Alert
What is the Dutch AMBER Alert?
Where did the term AMBER Alert originate?
What is an AMBER Alert?
AMBER Alert Netherlands is based on the American AMBER
that has saved the lives of approximately 600 children
. The system is named after Amber Hagerman
Texas. In 1996, nine year old Amber was abducted while riding her bike in her neighborhood, and was killed soon after. All global AMBER Alert initiatives aim to alert as many people as possible when a child goes missing or is abducted. The more people who are on the lookout for a child, the better the chance the child is found quickly and unharmed. Time is of the essence to an abducted child.
Who is responsible for issuing AMBER Alerts?
How do I know whether an AMBER Alert child has been found?
What is the difference between AMBER Alert and Burgernet?
An AMBER Alert is an emergency message, issued by the Dutch police when a child is abducted or missing when the police fears the child’s life or health is in danger. The system enables the police to immediately alert all and ask them to be on the lookout for the child in question.
When an AMBER Alert is issued, the picture of the AMBER Alert child is instantly visible everywhere:
on TVs, highway signs, billboards, signs in buses, and on thousands of websites
Also, over 2 million AMBER Alert messages are sent out via
, highly increasing the chances of a positive outcome.
In the last few years, an average of four AMBER Alerts were issued yearly. In
of these cases, the child was found thanks to tips on the AMBER Alert. This makes AMBER Alert the most successful citizen participation initiative in the Netherlands
and a great example of effective
What is the difference between AMBER Alert and NL Alert?
An AMBER Alert is issued when a child is abducted or missing and there are fears that the child’s life or health is in danger. This means that this system is only used in very urgent
missing children cases.
An AMBER Alert is always issued nationally and appears on a large number of different media: highway signs, TV, websites and Digital Signage screens. It is also issued using media such as Twitter, Facebook, SMS text messages and e-mail. This means that the image of the missing AMBER Alert child is literally visible everywhere.
In order to receive AMBER Alerts, please register here
and follow in the footsteps of over 2 million people and thousands of organizations that have done so already.
is a local system that alerts citizens by voicemail or SMS text message if an incident occurs in their neighborhood. It invites participants to watch out for suspicious persons, missing vehicles, etc. Citizens who would like to participate need to register on the Burgernet website
An AMBER Alert is issued when a child is abducted or missing and
there are fears that the child’s life or health is in danger
An AMBER Alert is always issued nationally and on a large number of different media: Twitter, Facebook, SMS text messages, e-mail, highway signs, TVs, radio, websites and Digital Signage screens. This means that the image of the missing child is literally visible everywhere.
In order to receive AMBER Alerts, please register here
and follow in the footsteps of over 2 million people and thousands of organizations.
is a new alert system that allows the Dutch government to warn citizens in case of a disaster, in addition to the sirens that are currently used. NL-Alert allows the government to send a short text-only message (no images) to mobile phones in a specific area, for instance if there are dangerous toxics in the air.
You do not need to register for NL-Alert; however, your phone settings do need to be set correctly
to be able to receive NL-Alert messages. Not all phones are able to receive NL-Alert messages.
AMBER Alert criteria
When is an AMBER Alert issued?
Why not issue an AMBER Alert whenever a child goes missing?
A few times a year, there are missing children cases in which the child runs a much greater risk than usual. For instance, when a child has been abducted by a stranger. The AMBER Alert system was developed for these cases.
Read more about the criteria for an AMBER Alert
We also bring public attention to other missing children cases for which no AMBER Alert was issued.
For this, we use our Twitter
What is the difference between an AMBER Alert and an urgent case of a child disappearance?
An AMBER Alert turns the whole country upside down. In order for AMBER Alerts to remain effective, we have to ensure that people will continue to notice the picture of the AMBER Alert child. This would not be the case if an alert was issued daily.
That is why strict criteria
are set; an AMBER Alert is issued only in the most urgent cases of child abductions or disappearances. The use of AMBER Alerts in less urgent cases would diminish the effect of the system.
Unfortunately, children go missing every day in the Netherlands; mostly children that run away from home. Thankfully, most of these children are found in good health after a period of time. Of course, in most of these cases, publicity can help find the child more quickly. That is why we use Twitter
to ask for your help to find these children.
An AMBER Alert turns the whole country upside down. That is why strict criteria
are set; an AMBER Alert is issued only in the most urgent cases of child abductions or disappearances. In order for AMBER Alerts to remain effective, we have to ensure that people will continue to notice the picture of the AMBER Alert child. This would not be the case if an alert was issued daily.
Of course, other cases of child disappearances are also important, and, in some of these cases, publicity can help find the child more quickly. That is why we use Twitter and Facebook and sometimes targeted SMS text messages in the area where the child went missing, to ask for your help to find these children.
Education and information
What can I tell my child on the topic of ‘abduction’?
I would like to give a lecture about AMBER Alert. Where can I find more information?
Luckily child abductions seldom occur. However, it is still important to tell your child what to do when faced with an (attempted) abduction. That is why the National Missing Persons Bureau (LBVP)
, part of the Dutch national police provides some tips for parents on discussing this topic with their child(ren). This material can also be used by teachers to discuss the subject with their pupils.
Educational material about missing children is available
Check out the tips for parents and children
Where can I find AMBER Alert posters, flyers and banners?
A lot of information can be found on this website. Also, check out our Facebook
page or our press page
for posters, images, folders, our logo, etc.
Can I use the AMBER Alert logo?
Please check the AMBER Alert press page
for posters, images, folders, our logo, etc.
Only active during an AMBER Alert:
Who is the girl on the AMBER Alert pictures?
Please feel free to download the AMBER Alert logo for promotion or support of AMBER Alert Netherlands. Commercial use of the logo or using the logo to (wrongly) suggest that you are a partner or founding member of AMBER Alert is prohibited.
Download the AMBER Alert logo
Questions? Please feel free to contact
This is an example of what an AMBER Alert would look like; the girl on this picture is not missing.
Registering for AMBER Alert
How do I receive AMBER Alerts?
Why is it so important that so many people receive AMBER Alerts?
how you can receive AMBER Alerts.
Can I receive AMBER Alerts abroad?
The more people register for AMBER Alert, the more people are on the look-out for missing children, increasing the chance that the missing child is found. You - literally - can save children’s lives by helping us, as can your friends and family. Please invite them to register for AMBER Alert
, free of charge.
Yes, you can. When you are asked for your postal code, just leave this field blank.
Do I have to pay to receive AMBER Alerts?
Can I register everybody at my organization for AMBER Alert?
No, receiving AMBER Alerts is free of charge. So register now
Yes, we even encourage this. If you would like to register more than 100 mobile company phones, you can register them in one go. To do this, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with:
Helping AMBER Alert
How can I do even more for AMBER Alert?
I have seen a missing child. What should I do?
how you can help AMBER Alert even more.
Have you seen a missing child? Please inform the police immediately. The police can be reached on: 0800 6070
(abroad: +31 79 345 9876
If you would like to place your call anonymously, contact Meld Misdaad Anoniem
(anonymous hotline) on 0800 7000. The number can also be called from abroad; dial 00 31 (0) 800 - 7000.
When your child goes missing
What can I do when my child goes missing?
How do I add a picture of a missing child to the AMBER Alert website?
Has your child gone missing? Please call the police immediately on alarm number 112 if:
- The child is younger than 12
- The child is physically and/or mentally disabled
- The child is in need of direct medical attention
- The child disappeared under suspicious circumstances
Attention: If a small child is missing, start by looking in places where the child could be in danger, such as near ponds or canals, the street, a place where dangerous products are kept, and so on, before you check out locations where the child may be, but is not in any danger. Keep in mind that small children sometimes hide somewhere and then fall asleep.
In all other cases, directly contact your local police
on 0900 8844.
More information and tips can be found on the website of the National Missing Persons Bureau (LBVP), part of the Dutch national police
Receiving AMBER Alerts
Do I receive a message when an AMBER Alert is cancelled?
Can I receive AMBER Alerts on my smartphone, tablet or mobile phone?
Not as an SMS text message or e-mail. However, on
and on social media such as
, we gladly keep you up to date on how the case develops.
Yes, there are several ways to receive AMBER Alerts on your smartphone, tablet or mobile phone:
About SMS text messages
I have a problem with the AMBER Alert SMS Alert. What to do?
Does AMBER Alert send out SMS text messages at night?
Do you have questions regarding the AMBER Alert SMS Alert, or are you experiencing problems registering or unregistering for the SMS Alert? Please send your question and details to email@example.com
Yes, we do. However, in order to receive AMBER Alerts as SMS text messages between 10 PM and 6 AM, you will need to register separately.
Does AMBER Alert send out SMS text messages in case of urgent case of missing children in my area?
If you are already registered for AMBER Alert, you will not receive AMBER Alert text messages between 10 PM and 6 AM. Would you like to receive AMBER Alerts via SMS during the night? Please send an SMS text message with the text NACHT AAN to 5100 (from the Netherlands only).
Unregister for AMBER Alert during nighttime? Send an SMS text message with the text NACHT UIT to 5100 (from the Netherlands only).
Yes we do. However, in order to receive SMS text messages about urgent cases of missing children in your area, you will need to register separately. The police decides when an SMS text message is issued for an endangered missing child.
If you are already registered for AMBER Alert, you will not receive SMS text messages about urgent cases of missing children in your area. Would you like to receive urgent cases of missing children in your area via SMS? Please send an SMS text message to 5100 (from the Netherlands only) with the text: AMBER AAN + your postal code. Example: AMBER AAN 1234 AB.
Using the AMBER Alert Netherlands App
Does the App work on a tablet?
Yes, the AMBER Alert Netherlands App (available for iOS
) can also be used on a tablet. However, most app functionality requires an internet connection. Also bear in mind that your tablet might not be usable to place calls, for instance to the police.
AMBER Alerts e-mails
My e-mail account changed. What to do?
I do not receive AMBER Alert E-mail Alerts or they end up in my spam-filter. What to do?
if you wish to stop using your old e-mail address. Enter the new address that you would like to use for receiving AMBER Alerts here
To ensure you receive AMBER Alert E-mail Alert messages in good order, please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts list. This ensures that AMBER Alert messages are not perceived as spam.
AMBER Alert on social media
Can I receive AMBER Alerts on Twitter and Facebook
AMBER Alert as PC pop up and screensaver
What type of computers do I need for the AMBER Alert software?
AMBER Alert software
Does AMBER Alert software run on Mac or Linux?
runs on computers with Windows (Windows 95 to Windows 8) and an internet connection. Large LCD or plasma screens must be linked to a Windows PC or ‘thin client
I cannot install the software. What to do?
AMBER Alert software runs on all Windows versions (from Windows 95 to Windows 8). Currently, the software does not run on other operating systems, such as MacIntosh. However, these users can register i.e. to receive AMBER Alerts as
SMS text message
, or on
An external party, Compu-Link
, has also developed an AMBER Alert client for Linux
Please note that AMBER Alert is not responsible for the content of this client.
To install software on your computer, you need Administrator permissions. Without the correct permissions, the software will not install or an error message might appear (“Access denied”). If you do not have the appropriate permissions, please contact your organization’s system administrator.
Does AMBER Alert require a lot of memory space?
What happens if I already have a screensaver or narrowcasting solution?
No, you only need to install
a very slim Player, powered by
The software hardly takes up any space (approximately 1 MB).
AMBER Alert as RSS Newsfeed
I want AMBER Alerts on my website. What to do?
Developing add-ons and web applications
I have developed an add-on for AMBER Alert. How do I make this available to others?
How do I link my own (web) application to AMBER Alert?
Have you developed your own add-on for AMBER Alert? We’d love to see it! Please get in touch with our development team
Does AMBER Alert contain spyware or adware?