In an ideal world, we wouldn’t need things like phone safety apps for women and extra tips and tricks to stay safe. Women wouldn’t have to keep their guard up when walking home, heading back to their car after dark, or you know, anytime we walk alone.
But unfortunately, we do.
In light of recent events, the conversation of violence against women and our constant work to keep ourselves safe has been in the forefront yet again (although it’s never left).
Talking about violence against women and the lengths we have to go to simply feel safe walking down the street is beyond maddening and potentially triggering.
Since this is the world we live in, while we demand and fight for sweeping systemic reform and gender equality, we must also take steps to proactively protect ourselves.
With a few quick updates and downloads of these safety apps for women, your phone can become an additional safety tool (along with following existing safety practices of course – like not walking alone, carrying pepper spray, and other “rules” women are forced to know).
Here Are 8 Safety Apps for Women and Other Hacks to Make Your Phone a Safety Tool:
To makeover your phone into the most helpful safety tool it can be, here are some suggested downloads and tips.
1. Download Noonlight
Noonlight is a free safety app for women with a super simple interface and incredibly reassuring premise.
Simply hold down the button on its homescreen anytime you’re feeling uneasy – like when walking through a questionable area or if you think you’re being followed. Let go of the button and enter a pin to disarm it, or don’t and it auto-dials 911.
It’s an incredibly comforting tool to have in your hand – it’ll even text you to check up on you a few minutes later. Use it anytime you get a gut feeling that something is off, and disarm it if all is well.
2. Set Up Your Emergency Settings
All newer cell phone models, both iPhone and Android, come equipped with ready-to-use safety features for emergency situations.
On an iPhone (8 and newer), hold down the lock screen button or press it five times in a row quickly, and it’ll call 911 plus sound a loud siren. Make sure you have emergency contacts listed under the Health settings on your phone and they’ll be called too.
On an Android phone, the process and features are similar – just go to “advanced features” and then the “SOS messaging tab” to set it up.
3. Set Up and Use Find My Friends
Another safety feature that comes on many phones (which we hopefully never need but appreciate having), is Find My Friends. And it’s exactly as it sounds.
Allow people of your choosing to see your locations in real time and vice versa.
This is only available on iPhones, but there are many Android alternatives that work similarly, such as Google Maps, which has a sharing location feature.
4. Download bSafe
bSafe is another reassuring safety app for women (for Android and Apple) that lets you sound an emergency alarm, alerting emergency contacts of your location if you’re in a dangerous situation.
A unique feature we love is that bSafe can even start filming a livestream of what’s happening around you, keeping a record for later. Another tool we hope we never need, but feel better knowing we have.
5. Download Walksafe
Walksafe is a safety app for women on Android and Apple alerts you if you’re walking through a high crime area and gives you the option to remap your route to somewhere safer.
You can also send periodic updates to friends as you walk, letting them know your safety status.
If you don’t arrive home in time, per the calculations of the app, given your route, it will automatically alert your emergency contacts.
6. Use Kitestring Texting Service
Less safety app and more buddy system, Kitestring is a texting service that you let know anytime you’re going out (like a tech version of a protective mom) and when you expect to be home.
If you’re not home in time (you can adjust it if needed), the app texts your emergency contacts to check in on you. Also, while you’re out, the app sends texts to check in and make sure you’re safe.
Kitestring is accessible because it does not need to be downloaded or require a smart phone to work. You just enter your full name and number to register.
7. Download My SafetiPin
SafetiPin is the last safety app on this list. A feature we love on this safety app for women is its ability for users to self-report data points such as streets in an urban area that aren’t well-lit, or an area that’s unsafe, creating a database for all users.
And if you find yourself in an unsafe area, the app will advise you of the nearest safe area to head to. It’s also available in multiple languages.
8. Keep Your Phone Fully Charged
Perhaps a no-brainer, but worth mentioning as a reminder, since without a charged phone, none of the above tips will work.
Get in the habit of leaving the house with a fully charged phone! Better still, keep a portable charger with you and a car charger if you drive, to minimize the chance of being caught out of the house with that dreaded low battery warning.
Use These Tips and Download These Safety Apps for Women
We have a long way to go as a society and we can’t wait for the day this article is obsolete and unneeded.
Unfortunately, nothing in this article will ever make us completely safe, and these tips and safety apps are not substitutions for other safety precautions.
But until we have the safe world that we deserve, we have to keep ourselves and each other as safe as possible. Using these phone tools and downloading these safety apps for women is one way to start.