Google launches Person Finder in response to Boston Marathon blasts

Find someone or post information about another

Two explosions rocked the area near the finish line of the Boston Marathon today, leaving dozens injured and at least three dead.

Social media is aflutter with up-to-the-minute reports of the incident, and those trying to track their loved ones now have several resources in place.

Among those is Google, which quickly set up a Boston Marathon Explosions Person Finder, something it's done during past crisis situations such as the 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami and the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

The service is currently tracking 3,600 records, and while it can't verify the authenticity of the reports, it serves as one tool people can use to find one another. Visitors can input the name in whole or in part of someone they are trying to locate, or post information about someone else.

In the past, Google has worked with other sites to get feeds into the Finder, but so far it's alone in populating information about Boston. It will stay up, we were told by Google, for as long as people are looking for their loved ones.

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As the US News Editor, Michelle (Twitter, Google+) keeps her eye on all things tech with particular interest on phones, tablets and finding out who the people are behind the devices. Any phone that can survive a regular (accidental) drop has her vote for best handset. Michelle previously worked covering local news in the Bay Area and has been with TechRadar since July 2012.