When you buy a new smartphone, you look at the camera, the memory and if it can keep up with your favourite apps. But did you know that your smartphone can keep you safe?
These apps will help you alert your loved ones and emergency services or give you advice if you are in trouble, without you having to make a phone call.
Related: Internet safety for children
Talk about your feelings without any judgement
Identifying a problem in your relationships (not only romantic ones) can be difficult, especially if the person who is abusing you in some way is someone you love. Fears of judgement or off-hand dismissals could prevent you from talking to someone about your feelings and your situation.
AI for good has recently launched rAInbow, a chatbot designed to help Facebook users identify signs of abuse through a multiple choice type conversation, which appears inconspicuously like any other chat on your Facebook messenger.
Visit www.hirainbow.org to find out how it works and start chatting.
Get Namola on your smartphone
Namola is a free South African app you can get on most smartphones that allows you to call for help in emergency situations. A Namola agent is able to trace your location through your phone and connect you to emergency services faster than a regular call would.
The free app gets you the help you need at the touch of a button even if you are unable to speak. It’s an incredibly useful app, and every South African should download it. For more information on how to download Namola visit the website.
Share your trip when travelling on Uber and Taxify
It’s late, you’ve had a few drinks and you can’t take public transport. Uber and Taxify make it easier for you to get where you are going without relying on strangers for a lift. It is important to remember that you will be alone in a car with a stranger and although precautions have been taken to ensure you are safe, things can happen and have happened in the past.
Always share your trip with someone you trust and are sure will look out for you. This means the person you have shared your trip with will be able to follow your movements and know if you are off course and alert police. It is also a good idea to stay in touch with someone, let them know when you are getting in the car and when you expect to arrive home. Also, let someone know if you anything makes you uncomfortable or suspicious.
Related: 5 road safety tips for women drivers
Send your location through Whatsapp
When you are not sure of where you are, but need help, Whatsapp allows you to send your location to someone who can send help your way. Sending a pin will let people know what area you are in and make you easier to find.
The map on your phone also means you don’t have to ask for direction. Asking for directions lets people around you know you are lost and those with bad intentions can take advantage of your situation.