Keep track of trick or treaters, virtually

FRESNO, California

From door, to door, to door -- keeping up with the kids on Halloween can be exhausting! Some new apps are helping parents take a bit of a breather.

Google Latitude is a free service that allows parents to see their kids as a dot on a map on their phone or computer.

With the Footprints app, you not only get to track every step, you can see it. Parents can install the app on their kids' phones with a parental control feature that makes it impossible for them to remove it without the pass code.

Fresno Police Sergeant Mark Hudson said these new smart-phone GPS tracking apps are a great tool for parents of older kids who go trick or treating on their own. "Its a great idea. But if you don't have them, certainly provide them with a cell phone, know their route -- have them call in at certain times and then have a planned time for them to be home."

Another safety tip: make sure your kids don't go trick or treating when they are hungry because they'll start dipping into the candy before they get home. Also inspect every piece, and when in doubt, just throw it out.

Sergeant Hudson says young trick or treaters should always be with a parent or trusted adult and older kids should go out in groups -- there is safety in numbers.

In case of an emergency, the FBI Child ID app provides instant and vital information for parents to share with police. Parents build a database they keep stored on their phones. They upload a picture and add physical descriptions as needed -- keeping your kids safe and your mind at ease this Halloween.

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