mPanic Button: Mobile phone alert system for women in distress

mPanic Button: Mobile phone alert system for women in distress

India
Organization type: 
for profit
Budget: 
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

mPanic Button is a hotkey on personal mobile phone that allows women in distress situation to initiate a alert to family, friends, employer, police etc. The call would indicate location of the women and record ongoing voice transactions to guide responding authorities to aid the women.

About You
Organization:
Ekgaon Technologies
Visit website
Section 1: About You
First Name

Vijay Pratap Singh

Last Name

Aditya

Country

, DL

Section 2: About Your Organization
Is your initiative connected to an established organization?

Yes

Organization Name

Ekgaon Technologies

Organization Phone

+911140551490

Organization Address

E-142A, Lower Ground Floor, Kalkaji, New Delhi - 110019

Organization Country

, DL

How long has this organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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Your idea
Country your work focuses on

, XX

Innovation
What makes your idea unique?

Mobile phones are becoming ubiquitous, a common personalized communication and data services device across the world. mPanic Button, aims at utlising the power of communication technology infrastructure to create a low cost and easy to use system for personal security while under distress situations. The system would be easy to use and would not need any software to be installed on mobile phones, allowing any user to join just by sending an SMS. The system would allow personalization of responding authorities (upto 3 respondents) to the distress call, that a user whishes to be informed in the time of distress. The “mPanic Button” would be a button of choice on the mobile phone of the user to be converted into a distress alert button for activating a call by continuously pressing the button for sometime, thus the alert would be activated in a few seconds, without even the assailants aware of the same. On receiving the alert the system would simultaneous initiate parallel calls to all the registered respondents, alerting them that the “user” is in distress situation, a SMS would be sent along with the nearest location of the “user” when the alert was initiated. Respondents would also be able to get access to live feed from the phone of “user” if the call remains active, to help them better understand the problematic situation in which user is during that instant, and then take necessary action to safeguard the “user”.

Do you have a patent for this idea?

Impact
Tell us about the social impact of your innovation. Please include both numbers and stories as evidence of this impact

While crime against women are increasing across the world, the situation is becoming much worse in fast developing cities in emerging economies where a large number of women are joining work force. Police records show high incidence of crimes against women in India. The National Crime Records Bureau reported in 1998 that the growth rate of crimes against women would be higher than the population growth rate by 2010. Over 32000 murders, 19,000 rapes, 7500 dowry deaths and 36500 molestation cases are the violent crimes reported in India in 2006 against women. There are many instances of crime especially against women go unreported in India. As per National Crime Records Bureau, national crime rate declined negligibly by .02 % in 2006; however in cities like New Delhi the rate grew to 357.2 more than double the national average of 167.7.

Problem: Describe the primary problem(s) that your innovation is addressing

Improvement in law and order situations is helping in reducing crime rate, however, a strategy that allows faster response to the victims in distress would help reduce much harm to the victims and may be help reduce crime against women. mPanic Button provides a mechanism for initiating a warning to closest people connected to the user and police authorities when a user is in distress, hence helping in faster response to help the user of the system from the distress situation. Over all expectation is that such a systems wider access would help reduce incidences of crime and help possible victims access to help in time.

Actions: Describe the steps that you are taking to make your innovation a success. What might prevent that success?

The proposed innovation is as much in technology as in service delivery model. A lot of attention is to be given for making the partnership work the way expected for the innovation to be a success. We have started discussions with agencies working for the welfare of women in India and started to involve them in planning process. We have worked out a plan for involvement of mobile network operators. Other partners i.e. is the law enforcement agencies would be involved at a later stage of discussion when we would have a demo package ready.

Lack of awareness of the service and lack of larger adoption may result in failure. Improper use of service (pranks) could also hurt the service. Initially the service is intended for women only, to give a focused attention to the group.

Results: Describe the expected results of these actions over the next three years. Please address each year separately, if possible

The expected results for next three years are

Year 1 – Design and development of system and initial pilots in two different geographies.

Year 3 – Scaling of system to the wider markets across India through identified key partners for enabling greater reach of the service. Initial impact of the service allows better and faster access of response teams to women in distress.

Year 3 – Scaling up the service globally in other markets, such that new growth could be financed through revenue generated through existing services.

How many people will your project serve annually?

More than 10,000

What is the average monthly household income in your target community, in US Dollars?

Does your innovation seek to have an impact on public policy?

Yes

If your innovation seeks to impact public policy, how?

Our innovation seeks to create awareness on crime against women and create a better aware society. The service is both intended to be a distress alert mechanism as also a prevention mechanism, where in offenders would desist from there activities considering repercussion of there action. The service moto is to make distress response quick and effective hence creating a better and safe place for women.

Sustainability
What stage is your project in?

Idea phase

Does your organization have a board of directors or an advisory board?

Yes

Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with NGOs?

Yes

Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with businesses?

Yes

Does your organization have a non monetary partnerships with government?

Yes

Please tell us more about how partnerships could be critical to the success of your innovation

Partnerships with relevant authorities that are responsible for law and order and crime response would be essential for this innovation to succeed. Cooperation and support of law officials would help in crime response to the officials. Further is would be essential to have a partnership with mobile phone network operators for promoting the systems access to larger number of people. Organistions working for awareness building in women can help spread awareness about the use of system for faster adoption.

We would like to learn more about how your initiative is financially supported. Please explain your business plan/revenue model

The initiative is an innovation of ekgaon and is being developed as revenue based system where a user pays a small user fee for using the service to the mobile network operator, who intern share the revenue with ekgaon. For generating awareness and adoption of the system grants/federal assistance would be raised along with partner organizations for funding awareness drives, aiding in adoption of the system with larger number of users.

The expected revenue from the service would help generate revenue for the company to sustain the service and also expand the service to new markets. The revenue would be shared with the mobile network operators.

The Story
What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?

New Delhi, where our office is located has largest crime rate against women. The need to identify a solution for safety of working women who are often affected by these crimes led to designing of this innovation.

Tell us about the person—the social innovator—behind this idea.

Vijay is a Social Entrepreneur with experience of developing systems and institutions for enabling access to services and markets for rural communities. An Electrical Engineering Graduate with Post-Graduation in Management Vijay brings in experience of technology innovation and understanding of socio-economic environment in developing economies. Vijay’s work revolves around utlising information and communication technologies for enabling access to markets, climate and weather information, technology & knowledge, finance and handholding services to rural business for making them competitive in global business environment. Helping network rural communities and forging partnership, to seek transfer of equity in favour of primary producers and artisans.

Vijay is Co-founder and CEO of ekgaon technologies, a technology firm driven by social values as core to technological & management intervention

Vijay is Co-founder & Member of Board of IndLinux Society and Indic Computing Consortium. Vijay is a Ashoka Fellow for Social entrepreneurship.

Vijay’s work in the field of rural service provision extends across a wide array of initiatives, programs and software; driven by and in the hope that rural consumers are in control of what services they can access and receive. Ekgaon’s emphasizes on partnerships and association for business service delivery to rural areas. Ekgaon has adopted consortium approach for enabling institutional service delivery; this model has been quite successful in meeting expectations of clients as well as partners.

How did you first hear about Changemakers?

Email from Changemakers

If through another source, please provide the information
ICRW
Does your project address any of the following barriers to women’s technology access and use?

If you checked any of the boxes above, please explain how.

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

Does your project involve women in one or more of the following stages of the technology lifecycle? Identification of the problem the technology will solve:

If you checked any of the boxes above, please explain how you will ensure women’s involvement in each relevant phase of the technology lifecycle.

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

If women are a focus of your project, how did this focus evolve?

The project focused on women from its conception..

Which type of women will your project reach directly?

Rural, Peri-urban, Urban, Low income, Middle income, High income.

In what ways does your project team/leadership involve women?

It is led by a woman/women from a developing country..

Has your organization formed any new partnerships in response to this challenge? If so, with what type/s of organization/s?

Multilateral/bilateral, Non-profit/NGO/community-based organization, For-profit, Government, Women's organization.

Has your project leadership had prior experience with the following?

Working with technologies.

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