Your Smart Phone can Save Your Life In War

From detecting where the gunmen are shooting from, to telling others you’re safe, these apps can save lives in war-torn countries.

Hear a bomb blast and you’d first ensure you’re safe, and then find out what has happened. Next comes phone calls you make and receive or texts you exchange to let others know how to stay safe.

These amazingly innovative apps have simple solutions to problems that citizens of a conflict-ridden area may come across. Do you need to have a smart-phone to stay safe? You probably do!


Whisper app

Plagued by insecurity and violence, the usage of “Whisper” in Iraq has doubled between June 12 and 15. Where social media giants like Facebook and Twitter are reporting disruptions to their services, “Whisper” is coming to the rescue. Sharing information and opinions anonymously, the app can be used to tell others where it is unsafe to be, or what the real perpetrators of terror are up to. 


Way to Safety 

Ways to safety app

The app “Ways to Safety” can be a practical solution for civil-war ridden countries like Syria, Lebanon and even Iraq. Inspired from a technology already being used by the Chicago Police Department, this app hopes to identify where the sound of a gunshot is coming from if activated within 30 seconds of it being heard. 

The app creators hope it can identify the number of bullets used and the type of weapon used to fire them, inevitably ensuring not only increased safety for the users but also better information collection.

So the next time you hear a gunshot, be sure to have your smart phone out!



Harassmap app

This app was created to counter sexual harassment that surged during the Arab revolution and continues to date. “HarassMap” aims for users to report an incident of sexual harassment and the location of safe zones. Through this data it hopes to create a map of areas that are more vulnerable to harassment.

HarassMap is based on the idea that online and mobile technology can help support offline face-to-face community work to mobilize the public against sexual harassment. Latest features of the service include the names of expert legal counsel and tips regarding the best way to get the police to take their complaints seriously.



Alive app

A very commendable effort by a Lebanese graduate student “Alive” is a response to bombings in Lebanon and the region. Everybody in a conflict-ridden region may know what it feels like to make a phone call saying “I’m alive.” But what if phone lines are choked and cell phone networks are messed up?

“Alive” can get your most urgent messages out loud and clear. Depending on Twitter, with a simple press of a button, you can tweet “I am still alive!” to the rest of the world. There are plans to roll this out over Facebook, too.

And what if Facebook and Twitter are banned in your conflict-ridden region? Well you’d hope someone would come up with a quick update!


LAF Shield

LAF Shield app

This one’s created by the armed forces of Lebanon. Lebanese citizens can tell the military command what has gone wrong with you by downloading and using the app called “LAF Shield.”

Apparently victims of kidnapping can find this very useful. That is, if the smart phone is still with them!

LAF Shield encourages you to report any suspicious activity or crime committed with a further option of swiping and initiating a stress call. It also indicates the danger zones using Google Maps.

Increasingly, smart phones are becoming that one-stop device for everything that you can possibly need in life. You know if you're in a hurry, you can forget your wallet but not your smart phone. With each of these apps, you can see why this is so! 

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