Personal security is a massive market opportunity. The fact that our modern societies are “relatively safe” does nothing to assure us that we’re safe when we’re out alone. Not even in the daytime. Women, of course, are generally more conscious about personal security when they’re alone, but nobody is truly safe in today’s biggest cities.

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Fortunately, we have mobile apps for our smartphones that can provide an added measure of security. Today there are a number of apps that you can download to your iPhone as an alternative to carrying deterrent products such as pepper spray or tasers. Of course, we’re not forgetting the fact that these tried and tested products are still highly effective against physical assault for the most part, but there’s nothing nearly as reassuring that you can have the police, fire department or an ambulance at your side in a matter of minutes – all with a simple tap on your smartphone screen.

So here are some of the most popular iPhone apps that you should review so you can pick the one you want. Having at least one of these on your phone is essential, so don’t wait until it’s too late.

SafeTrek – The Minimalist Personal Safety App

SafeTrek is a no-nonsense app that gives you a tactile sense of security. If you’re walking in a dangerous part of town, open the app and hold down the Safe button. If released, the app will send out a distress signal with your location to local law enforcement authorities after a ten-second countdown. You can disable the alarm within that ten seconds with a preset pin number. It’s as simple as that. The app costs $1.99 on the App Store, but it could be the best two bucks you ever spent.

Attack Alarm SMS – A Loud Sound and 2 Preset Text Messages

This one’s also a very simple app to use. There’s a big red virtual button within the app that will create a loud alarm sound when tapped. It will also simultaneously send distress text messages to two contacts that you need to set after downloading the app. Often the sound alone will scare away the attacker, especially if there are people nearby. This one’s also free to use so there’s no charge to download the fully functional app.

SafeSnapp – Takes Snapshots of your Attackers

If you’re not happy with just a loud alarm, SMS or distress signal, you can download this app for $3.99. What it does is take a series of snapshots of the attacker, and sends those along with your GPS location to preset numbers so the cops can get there quickly. You also have the ability to view older SOS messages on the app. It’s a little more expensive that most of the other apps but for what it does it’s worth the price. It’s especially useful when you want photographic evidence of the perpetrator during an assault or a mugging.

SOS iEmergency – And the Winner is…

This one is by far one of the most useful apps I’ve seen in this category. The only thing you need to do after you’ve downloaded and preset your emergency contacts is to press the panic button. The app does everything else, sending an email and a text message to your emergency contact, as well as alerting the local authorities of your emergency situation along with your GPS location. It’s $1.99 but still a great deal considering the features you get.

Global SOS – The Best Personal Security App for Travelers

This is great for people who travel to different countries. The first thing it does is to give you all the local emergency numbers at your current location. It also sends a preset text message to a trusted contact that you input on installing the app. It’s a free app, and has a very good user rating so obviously lots of people have found it extremely useful.

Beyond Personal Security Mobile Apps

You should be able to find these and other apps that you can download and “prep” so it’s ready and available for when you really need it.

On that note, apps are great for any type of emergency situation, but personal security goes beyond that. There are situations you should try to avoid, like traveling alone in the subway at night or walking down a known crime-ridden area. But other cues are not that obvious. For example, revealing where you live to an unknown person or giving your contact details out loud over the phone in a crowded place and so on.

Common sense is probably the best self-defense “app” ever. Most of us don’t even think twice about what we do that could put us in danger. So be aware of what you say, what you do, where you are, who you talk to, who’s listening in and anything else that might put you in harm’s way. That’s not to say you become paranoid and shut yourself away for 20 years, but a little bit of common sense goes a long way as far as personal security is concerned.

And for everything else, “there’s an app for that”!

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