A student has invented a new GPS rape alarm which can tell police the exact location of the victim, and is small enough to be clipped to a bra strap.
Rebecca Pick was driven to invent the Personal Guardian gadget during her final year of university after a female in her apartment block in Glasgow was attacked by a stranger while taking out her rubbish.
Even though she shouted and screamed and heard people walking past, nobody stopped to help her.
"We are now told to shout fire rather than rape because there is more chance somebody will respond," Pick explains on her website.
The University of Strathclyde graduate plans to release the alarm in October this year, and has already won praise for her product.
Love love this idea. Rape alarm with GPS and recorder. When do they come to the States?!? http://t.co/WxQsQkfyqh— Steph Hendrick (@cutecattheory) August 6, 2015
The 22-year-old's design works when the victim presses a button on the alarm, sending out a signal through their mobile phone's Bluetooth to a monitoring station. The station listens from the user's phone to determine whether they are in genuine danger, and if so, will alert the police to their location via the GPS function.
Predetermined emergency contacts such as family or friends will also be sent a text alerting them and providing the location. Incidents will be recorded upon activation in order to aid convictions, and the alarm can be set to go off to attract passer bys' attention.
The business student won Santander's universities entrepreneurship awards, landing £5,000 to develop the gadget, as well as being granted £60,000 from Gabriel Investments.
Although the alarm will be free, users will need to pay a £10 monthly charge for the monitoring station service.
Speaking to STV, Pick said: "The reaction has been unbelievable, I’ve been so lucky to be surrounded by people who want to help. I’ve had people getting in touch wanting to order two for their daughter."
Pick, however, has also been criticised for the alarm - with some saying it promotes victim blaming.
With the statistical rarity of that assault scenario + how few people have a 'rape alarm', I can't imagine it preventing a single attack.— Kate Leaver (@kateileaver) August 6, 2015
And I'm sure the woman who invented the 'rape alarm' is clever and capable, etc, but the rationale for her product is flawed.— Kate Leaver (@kateileaver) August 6, 2015
The thought of going out & having to wear a rape alarm though, why no device to curb perpetrators? http://t.co/QtSbC4qmmy— Dearbhail McDonald (@DearbhailDibs) August 2, 2015
To find out more about the alarm,Suggest a correction