Israeli App ‘Salient Eye’ catches thief in New Zealand

July 3, 2015 by Keren Cook
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Science and Technology are two of the Israel’s most developed sectors and Israeli free App Salient Eye helped capture a burglar this week in New Zealand using an old Smartphone.

Salient Eye

Salient Eye

Established Israeli software engineer and developer Haggai Meltzer is the brain behind the App – he began the home security journey 2 years ago.

His motivations for the new design were based on his own experience – a break in to his apartment about 4 years ago in Israel. “It took 3 days to recover the physical and several months to recover mentally,” says Meltzer.

Salient Eye is free and Meltzer plans to keep it this way. The App is gaining traction and has made it’s way all around the world – Africa, South America, Europe, the United States and now New Zealand.

Melissa Rodrigues of Waikanae, Wellington had two close shaves with an intruder on her property before she caught him on his third visit using the Israeli App Salient Eye.

Surprisingly, it was her 3 year-son who detected movement outside the property on both nights and raised the alarm with his parents.

Rodrigues says he ran into their room and said: “Daddy, I want to show you something,” and he led his parents out into the night. Melissa saw her gate wide open and footprints in the frost and knew her son was onto something.

She rang the police who suggested the couple take a “stakeout” approach. “So we decided to go along these lines, the idea of getting a camera and we searched online,” says Rodrigues.

Sure enough the intruder returned for a third time, but this time the Wellington family were prepared.

House break-in’s are a common phenomena. The Salient Eye website says that about 4% of houses are broken into. Instead of paying hundreds of dollars for a permanent alarm system, you can install an application that turns your smart phone into a mobile alarm system.

Rodrigues discovered she would have to “fork out about $1000 for a decent CCTV system”. It wasn’t an option to be spending that kind of money, and as Rodrigues says: “I’m not sure many people can, and that’s when we came up with the Salient App – its been developed for this purpose and we had nothing to lose, as its free.”

Haggai Meltzer

Haggai Meltzer

The family “gave it a go, and it worked a million times better than we expected,” says Rodrigues.

The phone – a Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, was strategically hidden in the car air filter in the garage. When the intruder passed onto the property Salient Eye photographed the intruder, the alarm was triggered and a link with photos was promptly sent to her email account.

The police said the photographs were “really good and gave them the evidence they needed,” says the Wellington resident. Even outsmarting police dogs who couldn’t’ trace the intruders scent outside the property. Salient Eye allowed the intruder to be quickly identified and he confessed to being on-site that evening.

Meltzer continues to work on Salient Eye; he plans to have an IOS App for the iPhone complete by the end of 2015 and “then more capability in 2016.

“We are thinking about adding infra-red light and developing another App that allows people to control Salient Eye, with more ease of use – this will be a paid subscription and very affordable,” says Meltzer.

Affordability is paramount to Meltzer. He wants to “keep costs at the bottom of the pyramid because I don’t forget the reason why I got into doing it”.

He sees value in the idea that “from the beginning, everyone can have it”.

Salient Eye is easy to use and will always be accessible and affordable. It’s a great way of recycling dated phones.

Meltzer says, “I had a drawer full of old smartphones. They were too old for the thief to take an interest, but not too old for me to figure out a better way to use them.”

For more information about Salient Eye, visit:


One Response to “Israeli App ‘Salient Eye’ catches thief in New Zealand”
  1. harry rich says:

    As the BDS movement has made great progress in New Zealand, why is Salient Eye being used there as well as other BDS infested countries. Someone is being a Hyppocrite

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