Tech Street: Five Safety Apps Every Woman Must Have On Her Smartphone

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The Mumbai police recently launched a helpline number 9969777888 with a free SMS service wherein any woman who is travelling alone can message the registration number of her Rickshaw or Taxi to the number and the police will keep a track of the vehicle she is travelling in through GPS. In the wake of the several crimes against women that have taken place in the city and still counting, the introduction of a facility like this one is a great step. We take a look at the other useful applications in your smartphone that make sure you reach home safely.

Picture courtesy: missmalini.com
Picture courtesy: missmalini.com

VithU
An initiative by Channel (V)’s crime show Gumrah, the VithU app is currently endorsed by Kareena Kapoor as a measure against sexual harassment of women. At present, the VithU app is available to download in all Android phones.

How it works:

  • The app will send out alert messages every 2 minutes to your designated contacts once the power button of the smartphone is clicked consecutively 2 times.
  • They will receive a message that reads, “I am in danger. Please follow my location.” along with a link to your updated location in every 2 minutes.
  • The ‘Tips Feed’ option also provides the safety tips one can follow in an emergency situation.
Picture courtesy. greatist.com
Picture courtesy. greatist.com

Circle of 6
For Indian users, the app has been programmed for use in both English and Hindi. The striking feature about the app it works for people of all genders and orientations and it gender neutral, the main goal being the elimination of violence. The app emphasizes on how a woman can meet danger not only when she’s travelling alone but also when she is meeting someone for the first time or meeting someone unpleasant. The app can be downloaded on all Android phones and iPhone.

How it works:

  • Add 6 members of your trusted circle.
  • If you think danger is lurking around, tap the phone twice.
  • The application will send out 3 alert messages to all the 6 pre-designated people from your circle.
  • You can either use the “Come and get me” option wherein an SMS message will be sent to your contacts along with your exact location using GPS.
  • You can also use the “Call me” option wherein an SMS that reads, “Call and pretend that you need me. I need interruption.”
  • One call also use this app to call national hotlines or any local emergency numbers.
Picture courtesy: ihollaback.org
Picture courtesy: ihollaback.org

Hollaback
Hollaback is an international organization and its app is available on all Android phones and iPhone. With the tagline, “Hollaback! You have the power to end street harassment”, the users can upload the photo of the harasser of share their story on hollaback.org. The app is now available worldwide and in 9 different languages.

How it works:

  • Apart from the option of sharing your story, the app includes a map where you can see incidents of harassment, marked in pink dots.
  • The incidents of bystander intervention are marked in green dots.
  • In the resources section, you can learn more about how to respond to the harasser and be a better bystander.
mobigyaan.com
mobigyaan.com

Sentinel
The biggest fear while using a smartphone app for self defence is your attacker snatching the phone away from you and destroying it. Sentinel is one smartphone app that continues to send signals, even after the smartphone is destroyed. The app can be downloaded on Android phones and other platforms.

How it works:

  • Press the app button and send alerts to your friends through calls, SMSes or emails.
  • The app also sends out your location to your concerned friends and family members, even if your phone is not connected to the internet.
Picture courtesy: market.android.com
Picture courtesy: market.android.com

Scream Alarm
Scream Alarm! is different from the other apps wherein your family and friends are notified. This app can be used as a quick way of self defence, especially if the attacker has covered the mouth of the victim. All one has to do is press the button on the screen to generate a loud scream in a woman’s voice. The app can be downloaded on all Android phones.

How it works:

  • Press the button on screen to generate a loud scream.
  • Bring the phone closer to the offender’s ear.
  • It can help grab the neighbourhood’s attention and also damage the offender’s ear.

Apart from these, the other apps you that can come handy are Fightback, TellTail, SafetiPin, SpotNSaveFeel Secure, iFollow among the many others.

Whoever said that women must come back home early and must not travel alone, prove them wrong by leading your life your way. And in times of crisis, remember, your safety is only away from tapping your smartphone screen and kicking the offender in a place where it hurts the most.

Featured image courtesy: Indian Express

Post By Shikha Chawla (16 Posts)

Aspiring writer and student. I bite off more than I can chew, literally. Also, a sporadic dancer. Willing to beg, borrow and steal for chocolates.

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Shikha Chawla

Shikha Chawla
Aspiring writer and student. I bite off more than I can chew, literally. Also, a sporadic dancer. Willing to beg, borrow and steal for chocolates.