Panic Button is no longer supported. Read more about why on theengineroom.org/blog
Panic Button is a free and beta application that turns your mobile phone into a secret alarm for when you're in trouble. When triggered, it will sends alerts every 5 minutes with your location. Anyone in the world who is concerned about facing risk because of their human rights work can use the Panic Button alert application on their Android phone. → Panic Button sends alerts automatically every 5 minutes
Once Panic Button is triggered, it will send alerts every 5 minutes to your contacts to keep them informed about your location. → Panic Button alerts can only be deactivated with a Pin code
To prevent deactivation by someone else, you will need to enter your chosen pin code to deactivate the automatic sending of the alert every 5 minutes.
Panic Button can only facilitate emergency assistance when a user's contacts are in a position to act. The disguise delays the discovery of the application for as long as possible so that the app can send location updates to their chosen contacts. However, this does not prevent a competent adversary from accessing the content or recipient of the message through the network operator. Users are encouraged to visit our help pages to understand more about the general security risks of using their mobile phone.
Some users have reported important problems and this is really helpful during the beta phase, in order to allow us to improve Panic Button:
a/ Accidental Alert Triggering: Unwanted triggering of the alert has cost money and caused worries. We’re really sorry for this. Sometimes answering a call is triggering the alert, but it also seems that when devices have covers that turn the phone on automatically, it can lead to triggering the alert as well. We are looking into the problem and which devices it appears on (it seems that mostly Samsung Galaxy models, Google Nexus 5 and HTC Evo have been affected).
b/ Cannot Trigger: On the other end for some, the alert couldn’t be activated. It seems the issue concerns users with Android 2.3. We are looking into the issue as well.
c/ Stopping the Alert: Many of you couldn’t stop the alert when it was triggered (voluntarily or accidentally). This app, when activated, will send messages every 5 minutes, thus incurring SMS costs. The installation wizard also could better explain that the procedure to unlock the disguise - opening the calculator disguise, long press on a calculator button, PIN entry - is needed to deactivate the alert. This is a security feature, but we realise it should be better explained in the app.
d/ Continues Alerting after Phone Restarts: Panic Button will also continue sending messages even if you turn the phone on and off. This is an intended feature (as if you are arrested and your phone is turned off by the people arresting you, we want to make sure that your location or message will be sent when and if they turn it on again).
To turn off the Panic Button please follow these steps:
→ Open the application (It should be called "Calculate!")
→ A calculator should appear.
→ Click and hold any button of the Calculator (for instance 5) for 5 seconds.
→ Enter your secret PIN (which you chose during the setup). Then click on "Stop the Alert". That's it! Now your phone should stop sending the SMSes.
If you run into further problems while we are still in Beta phase, you can then uninstall the application in the following manner:
→ Go to the Settings menu
→ Go to the Apps or Application menu.
→ Here go to the Installed Apps tab
→ You should see Calculate! here (or Panic Button). Click there.
→ An Uninstall button should be on the screen and you can click it and confirm to uninstall the app.