This month’s emergency alert test could put domestic abuse victims in danger, charities have warned.
A loud alarm will set off on most phones in the UK to test the Government’s new broadcast system at 3pm on April 23.
The signal will be used for authorities to communicate with the public about life-threatening events, such as extreme floods, wildfires or terrorism.
But the alert will go off whether a phone is on silent or not and this may put domestic abuse victims with secret emergency handsets at risk.
Several charities, including Refuge and the National Centre for Domestic Violence, have flagged this to the Government and urged people living with abusers to disable the alerts or switch their phones off completely.
Refuge’s senior operations tech abuse manager, Emma Pickering, told The Times they want the Government to raise more awareness about how to disable the feature so people in danger have enough time to see it.
She said: ‘Our concerns are centred on the very real risk to survivors of domestic abuse who may have secret or secondary phones hidden within the home, which they must ensure are not discovered by their perpetrators.
‘These devices can be a lifeline for women who need to access support or flee their abuser.’
From the Metro