Often, victims of sexual abuse and assault face the dilemma of whether to reveal the identity of their offenders on the internet.
The concern mainly revolves around how the world, including friends and family, would react or if outing the assaulter would endanger their life further.
However, now, an app called Smashboardis leveraging technology to tackle these problems, help victims.
Smashboard is for reporting sexual assault cases
Developed by Noopur Tiwari, an India-based independent journalist, Smashboard is a digital ally for survivors of sexual abuse.
The platform uses the power of Ethereum Blockchain and offers an encrypted, private journal, more like a safe online space, to report incidents of abuse with complete anonymity.
It records the incident with a permanent time-stamp, so that the victims can adequately handle police/judicial inquiries.
Why Tiwari thinks Smashboard is needed
"Seeking help can be risky for survivors, and there are consequences of revealing one's identity. Often, survivors have undiagnosed post-traumatic stress disorder that comes in the way of seeking help," Tiwari told Quartz Indiawhile explaining the need for the app.
App also offers access to mental health and legal practitioners
Along with offering a safe place to report cases of abuse, Smashboard also provides access to enlisted mental health and legal practitioners and journalists.
This way, the victims in need can not just open up about assault without revealing their identity and take action against the offenders but also connect with a mental health expert to deal with the trauma stemming from the incident.
This will help victims start conversations, safely
"We allow pseudo-anonymity to the users so that they can have initial conversations from the comfort of their beds, if need be, before they feel comfortable enough to work with, say a therapist or share information with a journalist or a lawyer," Tiwari added.
Currently, Smashboard is limited to English users
Smashboard is available to download on iOS and Android devices but is only available in English, French, and Spanish.
In the future, Tiwari hopes to improve the app to add support for Indian regional languages as well as aid Dalits and women of other marginalized groups by offering options to tell their story and ask for legal, medical help.