Circle of 6 App Provides Real Life Safety Net
When you hear the term "mobile security," you probably think about protecting your personal information and other data stored on your phone. But this can also mean using your phone for protection in other ways. Thanks to developers, there are also apps that can help protect your physical safety.
A team of female app developers got together over a year ago to come up with a way to use phone technology to protect individuals from physical attacks. Their creation, Circle of 6, came in first place in the Apps Against Abuse Challenge hosted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services last November, according to Forbes. The app is aimed at young women specifically, but it can be a helpful resource for anyone. Since its launch in March, the free app has been downloaded more than 30,000 times.
So how exactly does it work? Well, the app prompts you to choose six of your closest friends and family members - this is your circle. They are your go-to friends for any emergency, and the app makes it easy to contact them all at once when you're in a tricky situation. There are four discrete icons you can use to contact your circle.
Car icon: When you tap this icon, all six of your friends will be sent a text message containing a map of your location using GPS as well as a note that explains you need someone to pick you up.
Phone icon: If you're being chatted up by someone you'd rather not be talking to, or a date is going horribly wrong, touch the phone icon to send a text to your circle. Your six friends will each receive a text that says, "Call and pretend you need me. I need an interruption."
Chat icon: This button is for your mental health. If you're facing a tough decision, stressed out about work or school, or just need someone to talk to, the chat icon lets your circle know that they are needed.
Danger icon: The exclamation point button is your link to two national hotlines - the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) and Love is Respect - a resource for dating and sexual abuse issues.
Circle of 6 is one of a handful of apps available to young adults that can help increase their personal safety when it comes to meeting new romantic partners and even moving safely through the streets. You can use this as well as other options like a second mobile number to ensure you are protected.