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Automatic alerts when you're in trouble

Automatic alerts when you're in trouble
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Remember the days when your parents made you check in at regular intervals when you were out on a date, at a party or traveling? Sure it was a little annoying, but it was also comforting knowing someone would come looking for you if something bad happened.

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Well, you can get that same sense of comfort as an adult with Kitestring. This service keeps tabs on you and lets an emergency contact know if something goes wrong.

How does it work? You sign up for a free account and put in an emergency contact.

Then you can send Kitestring a text with time period like "30m." After 30 minutes, Kitestring will send you a check-up text and you have five minutes to respond with an "OK."   If you don't reply, Kitestring sends an alert to your emergency contact.

It's handy to set before blind dates, parties, walking or traveling alone, or going into sketchy situations. And because it's based on text messages it works with any cellphone, not just smartphones.

There are other features like the ability to extend the time period, and setting a duress code to trigger an immediate alert.

The basic service is free and gives you 8 uses a month with one emergency contact. There's also a paid version for $3 a month that gives you unlimited uses and contacts, along with a recurring check-in mode and customized response period.

The recurring check-in mode makes it useful for people with medical conditions who live alone. You can have it check in on you every few hours, for example.

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