New Year started with a not so happy note in India, more so in the IT capital of the country. What grabbed more attention than celebrations is the fact that the city has seen a series of women’s safety violation incidents right from the first day of the new year. Opinions remained divided though as some mindlessly blamed the women while others condemning the events and calling for the women to get trained in martial or and carry self-defense equipment. How feasible training and martial arts are, is, however, a matter of question. There are ways though on how a victim can help herself and alert the people and police around. We are talking about personal safety apps which can be incredibly helpful in such times. Be it informing your family and friends, calling the police or trigger an alert, these apps to a great extent can help you remain safe and handle the situation. Here is a list of seven personal safety apps, which are must-have for every women’s smartphones and smart devices.
Developed by an all woman team in Delhi, Go Suraksheit is a free safety app, which enables you to seek help from people in your contact list, whom you trust the most. All you need to do is, launch the application and press the help button. The app will automatically help you:
1). Send SMS and place a call to five preconfigured contacts.
2). Update your Facebook status with a customized post.
3). Trigger a loud alarm to seek attention for nearby help.
4). The alarm can be stopped with a configurable pin.
The SMS and the Facebook post would include the current location and a link to the exact location on the map enabling others to track the person in need of help. The app keeps calling the contacts until somebody picks up the phone to respond.
Ridesafe is a free safety app that ensures you are safe while traveling in a bus or a cab. It automatically detects any deviation from the route to your destination. The algorithm of the app continuously monitors your cab ride in real time to detect any suspicious activity by the driver and if it detects any like deviation from the route, then it immediately informs a selected list of contacts through free SMS. The user only requires to enter the destinations in the app when they are taking a cab, the app knows it immediately when the driver is trying to cook trouble taking differently. Developed by IIT and BITS Pilani alumni, Ridesafe works on any part of the world.
Developed by Tech Mahindra, Fightback is an app to ensure safety and security of the women folk by sending SOS alert from the phone of the user. The friend and family in the contact list are informed through SMS and Facebook using GPRS, GPS, and location maps. The app continuously tracks the GPS movement of the user and the user can press the panic button in case of emergency to seek FIGHTBACK assistance. Apart from these features, the app also warns the users by pinning the unsafe places in the Google map. Simple and easy to use, the users can get started by downloading the app, launching it, registering with the app and logging in using the credentials.
I Feel Safe
A mobile application developed by the Nirbhaya Jyoti Trust and Mobile Standards Alliance of India. The app adds a virtual panic button while the users can press to activate the alarm. One great thing about this app is that the alarm can be invoked even when the phone is locked or the SIM card is not present in the phone. No data plan or Wi-Fi network is required to activate the emergency alarm and the app works across India. In emergency situations, the app sends a notification to emergency contacts with the latitude and longitude of the current location of the user. It also automatically places a call to the national emergency number 100.
A safety application supported by the Police at Gurgaon, Jalandhar, Chandigarh, Jammu, Mohali and UP Fire Services. The key feature of the Smart 24X7 includes a panic alert being sent to the family and friends during an emergency and one can get instant help from the police, hospital or fire. It also does voice recording and photographs during emergencies and transfers to the police. With around 100,000 downloads, Smart 24X7 looks like one of the most popular apps in the country.
SafetiPin, a map-based free personal safety app available in Hindi and English, provides safety scores of areas. It will give an alert whenever the user enters an unsafe area when the app is running in the background. Also, the user can find the safest route between two places based on parameters like whether or not the locality is well lit, crowd density of the area, public transport, security and more. It uses GPS locator and crowdsourcing to provide the safety information about the places and connect with friend and family of the user whenever the user feels unsafe.
Nirbhaya- Be Fearless
Developed by Cloud Infotech, Pune Nirbhaya is a free personal safety app, for any emergency situation. It enables you to stamp the safe and the unsafe areas of the city helping the fellow citizen become more aware of the areas around. The user can send emergency messages to a select group of friends and families when in danger. Pressing the power button sends SOS signal to the friends and families, making them aware of the location of the user and possible danger. Shaking the device can also send these alerts, even when the phone is locked.
These safety apps have become smartphone essentials for not just women, but also for aged, children, and men. A safer world for everyone without any fear is something we can only hope we’ll have in some not so far future. Until that happens, we will have to rely on these apps to ensure the safety of us and the people around us. For more such interesting stories on apps and technologies please stay tuned to our blog.
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