Mobile devices can literally save your life. Download these apps to keep prevention in your palm!
Circle of 6 (iPhone, free)
Circle of 6 has an unobtrusive screen that’s simple to operate. Two taps will send out one of three predetermined text messages to 6 contacts of your choice including a call for help getting home that automatically includes an address and map of your exact location, or a request for a phone call from you to break up a tense situation. The app also contains pre-programmed national hotline numbers and a local number you can customize for campus security, police or 911. Circle of 6 is the winner of the Department of Health and Human Services / White House “Apps Against Abuse” Challenge and its four developers have significant expertise in the fields of sexual violence prevention, mobile technology, graphic design and healthy relationship building. Three in fact are women.
Hollaback! (iPhone and Android, free)
Users can choose to take and upload a photo of their harasser “caught in the act” and submit their story to be recorded and mapped on ihollaback.org. This not only signals the perpetrator that his image will be shared and posted on a street harassment prevention website, but also warns others of areas in which harassment occurs.
bSafe (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, free & subscription versions)
A personal safety alarm that sends an emergency message to your chosen contacts with the push of a single button, bSafe’s slogan is “Never walk alone.” The free version allows you to set up a safety net of “Guardians” who can respond to your SOS text message; one Guardian you designate will receive a phone call.(Both versions give you an unlimited number of Guardians available by text message; the subscription version gives you up to 3 Guardians who can be called simultaneously.) All Guardians receive a text message with a link to a map showing your location via GPS. You can also program a Fake Incoming Call if you are threatened, with six options for when the call should be initiated (immediately, 5 seconds, 15 seconds, 1 minute, 5 minutes, 10 minutes.) The subscription version of bSafe gives you two additional levels of safety: a Risk Mode with real time GPS tracking of your position, and a Timer Mode with automatic alarm activation (e.g. if you don’t log in after the programmed time period, your Guardians will receive an alert with your entire route mapped out.)
Guardly (iPhone/iPod Touch, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone; free & subscription versions)
This app differs from others in that it places a phone call to your contacts with your name, exact location, the type of emergency. (Being able to specify different contacts for different types of emergencies — such as “Peanut Allergy,” “Stroke” or “Walking Home Alone” — differentiates this from other apps, and it also enable you to identify different locations you frequent such as “Home,” “School” or “Work.”)
cab4me (iPhone and Android, free & subscription versions)
Get a cab. Anytime. Anywhere. That’s the idea behind this mobile cab finder app. Click on cab4me and your phone’s GPS shows your position on a map. You can select that as your approximate pickup location or choose a nearby taxi stand if one shows up based on available data.
GuardSnap (iPhone and Android, $2.99)
This app was developed after learning real estate agents have been victims of attack when showing property. It can be used as a tool to provide a quick means of documenting and preserving first time personal or business contacts. It’s simple: take their picture, or that of their car or license plate and it sends it to third parties along with time, date, and geographic location. The premise behind this app is that of someone knows they can be identified, they may be less likely to initiate any negative behavior and move on.
If you have an app you would like to share, add to the comment section below.