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5 apps that can save your life in an emergency

You're not alone, we can't help it, we feel like danger can be lurking everywhere. Walking down the street, getting into your car in a parking lot, even at home - the news is filled with horrible everyday situations where someone gets attacked and violated.

In emergencies like these or on occasions where you just feel uneasy and insecure, did you know that there's a distress signal tool at your disposal at all times? A tool you can deploy anytime you may need help from the people you trust?

Yes, we're talking about your smartphone and the multiple SOS and emergency apps you can download and use now in times of dire need. Here are our top five picks:

Important: Most of these apps use your phone's GPS and location tracking, which may impact and decrease its battery life.

1. Silent Beacon: Emergency Alert System

SIlent Beacon

Silent Beacon, available for iOS and Android, is described by its creators as "the emergency alert system for the digital age." It is a free app and service that uses GPS-tracking to send your location to a custom set of contacts, including 911 or emergency services, through a "distress message."

This distress message can be sent via customizable text, email or a push notification with a touch of the app's button during emergencies when the beacon is activated. A "Nudge" feature is also included to notify your contacts to stand by for any incoming alert, for example, if you're in an area you don't feel comfortable visiting.

Silent Beacon is simple, straightforward and for a free app, it does its job well - send a message and your location via text notification in a jiffy. You never know, that may be enough to save you from trouble one day.

For an ever quicker way to send out a Silent Beacon alert, they sell a separate wearable device that has all the functions of the app built in. It connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth and can send out a distress signal even with your phone in your pocket.

2. bSafe: Personal Safety App


bSafe is another emergency alert app system for iOS and Android that will notify up to four selected contacts, called "Guardians" by the app, in an event of an emergency.

bSafe's free version lets you send out a distress message by hitting its SOS button. This notifies your "Guardians" of the emergency via text message and provides them with your location. To prevent any false warnings while setting up your emergency contacts, bSafe's free version also has a Test feature.

For more features, bSafe also has a premium subscription-based version of its service. This version has real-time location tracking called "Follow Me," the safe arrival notification "I'm Here," video capabilities, history logs and a Fake Call button to make your phone ring on a set time.

bCall's premium service costs $20 a year with a special $30 promo price for a two-year subscription.

Next page: Companion: Mobile Personal Safety and LifeLine Response
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