Women In Distress

Cell phone safety for domestic violence survivors

Many of us have a love-hate relationship with technology. When it works, it seems like the possibilities are endless and it can be so convenient, but technology can also cause equal frustration when it doesn’t work, or when we realize how reliant on technology we are. As cell phones developed there has been huge advancements. Now we have touch screen, video calling, location sharing, etc. These features can be really helpful in connecting and bringing us closer, but what happens when we choose not to be close to someone anymore? What happens when the person we trusted the most and shared the most information with like passwords, location, and a shared cell phone plan, is abusive? What happens when we need OUT of that situation?

This is a common problem that domestic violence survivors deal with. How do you cut ties, exit safely, and move on, if your abuser can and is tracking everything you are doing? This answer is never simple, but some tech companies see the issue and are doing something about it.

Apple has launched a new feature called Safety Check to help survivors of domestic violence cut electronic ties to their abuser. This feature (on iOS 16) allows the user to reset and review who has access to important information, like location, passwords, messages, and other information on apps. This also triggers a reset of the AppleID password, which removes anyone else’s access to an iCloud account and personal data stored in the cloud. The reset would likely disable any tracking or spyware software on the phone. Apple has also made an app for Apple and Android users that would detect nearby AirTags (small, hard-to-see tracking devices that can be discreetly placed for stalking) so you can always be on the lookout without much effort.

To learn more about this, check out this link:

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