PFO-powered security bracelet for human rights activists now in Western Balkans

In the past weeks the Natalia Project , a security bracelet with GPS and GSM technology developed by Swedish based PFO Tech for Civil Rights Defenders, has been assigned to human rights activists in Albania and Montenegro. The bracelet enables a bearer to send a distress signal with a live GPS position to an assigned group of people.   Kristi Pinderi, LGBT activist and Executive Director of the organisation LGBT Pro in Albania, is exposed to threats and hate crime on a daily basis. For him, the bracelet represents a strong moral support in his day-to-day work. ”Behind the bracelet there is an entire system and organisation with people, institutions, and media ready and willing to act in case of an emergency. It is a way for human rights activists not to feel alone and it is definitely the best tool for empowering them. When you are an activists, sometimes you forget about practical details like security, you are driven by your activism and ideals,” says Pinderi.   Another activist to receive the bracelet is Vanja Ćalović, head of MANS, an organisation that works on corruption issues Montenegro, a country that has been beset with corruption scandals, often involving high-ranking officials. ”Bearing in mind the nature of MANS work, the fact that we are investigating some of the most powerful criminals in the country, and their dealings with politicians, our security is a matter of concern. I find the Natalia Bracelet a useful security tool that will be especially helpful during my field work.” says Vanja Ćalović.   Johan Carlsson, CEO of PFO Tech , is pleased to see...

PFO Technologies’ GPS Bracelet shortlisted for Cannes Lions Awards

Presentations were held over the weekend by the shortlisted entrants in the Cannes Lions Awards. Among them was the PFO-powered Natalia Project, an innovative GPS safety bracelet developed and designed by PFO Technologies for Civil Rights Defenders. The GPS bracelet, configured to protect human rights activists at risk, has so far been nominated for the categories Innovation, Mobile, PR , and Promo & Activation.   The Natalia Project , a GPS bracelet developed and designed by PFO Technologies to protect human rights activists at risk, was launched in April by Civil Rights Defenders. The bracelet enables activists to notify the organisation’s headquarters, and the world, of an attack through sms and social media platforms, giving people everywhere the chance to get involved and put pressure on an oppressive regime.   PFO is a smart bracelet utilising GSM and GPS with a patented alarm function, as well as specifically developed algorithms to improve location accuracy and speed up communication. It allows for easy integration into an organisation’s own infrastructure through a standardised API. The PFO system has been adopted by companies and organisations globally to increase the safety of associates and...

Alarm Bracelet Built To Protect Activists

The killing of a Russian journalist has inspired a Swedish human rights group to develop a personal alarm system for activists in danger. The group hopes the bracelet, designed to endure an assault and send a distress signal by the wearer....

Natalia Il Braccialetto Che Si Collega A Facebook In Caso Di Rapidamento

Natalia, il braccialetto che si collega a Facebook in caso di rapimento WireLanciato dall’associazione svedese Civil Rights Defenders sfrutta, oltre ai social network, Gps e reti mobili per attivare in tempo reale una rete di protezione a favore degli attivisti attaccati in ogni parte del mondo Combattere per i diritti umani è un intento nobile e fondamentale, oggi come in passato. Ma può essere anche molto pericoloso, soprattutto in certe aree del mondo. Attivisti e simpatizzanti di centinaia di organizzazioni, ma anche giornalisti coraggiosi, vengono spesso sottoposti alle più insopportabili persecuzioni se non addirittura rapiti o uccisi. Non serve guardare troppo lontano: si va dalle denunce verso la criminalità organizzata, proprio in Italia, alle scelte di governi a dir poco opachi come quello russo. Natalia Project nasce per cercare di difendere dalle prepotenze del potere illegale o legale chi si batte per la giustizia. Lanciato dall’associazione svedese Civil Rights Defenders, Natalia Project è un progetto che ruota intorno a un braccialetto da indossare al polso e che fa leva anche sulle donazioni online degli utenti. Ricorda un po’ quelle wristband che si usano per il tanto di moda self-tracking. Battezzato Natalia in ricordo della giornalista Natalia Estemirova – la reporter rapita in Cecenia e ritrovata morta nella vicina Inguscezia nel luglio 2009 – il dispositivo è programmato per spedire messaggi d’allarme se attivato o forzosamente rimosso da chi lo indossa. Insomma, un sistema wi-fi anti-aggressione: in caso di un attacco alla propria incolumità fisica l’attivista può spedire un’allerta al sistema. Il messaggio sarà raccolto sia dal quartier generale del gruppo svedese a Stoccolma che dagli attivisti più vicini al...

Can This Bracelet Save Your Life

Human-rights workers operate under incredibly dangerous circumstances. The last thing you’d expect to keep them out of harm’s way? A bracelet. Civil Rights Defenders, a Stockholm-based human-rights group with people on the ground in some of the world’s most dire areas, has launched the “Natalia Project,” with the idea of protecting its most endangered workers. The project is focused on a single device: a black or orange bracelet of connecting squares, that features the Civil Rights Defenders logo in heavy type. With the touch of a button, the GPS-equipped accessory is programmed to send an alarm to law enforcement, five nearby colleagues, and, perhaps most innovatively, a social-media blast to the Internet. When the bracelet is triggered or forcibly removed, an alert is routed through the Civil Rights Defenders headquarters, which then sends it via email, SMS texts, and the organization’s social-media sites to followers who sign up to receive alerts. The blast, particularly shareable via Twitter and Facebook, allows people from across the world to react and spread news as a potentially threatening situation unfolds. Robert Hårdh, the group’s executive director, likens it to wearing “millions of people around the world on your wrist.” That’s the goal, at least. It’s named after human-rights worker Natalia Estemirova, who was murdered in 2009 while investigating abuses in Russia’s dangerous North Caucasus. The project is still in its infancy, but the hashtag #NataliaProject has already racked up nearly a thousand tweets from supporters. So far, the bracelet has only been given to five Civil Rights Defender employees, who will wear it where it all began, in the turbulent North Caucasus. (The...

En Lank Kan Radda Livet

Magomed Mutsolgov har ett av världens farligaste jobb. Han arbetar för mänskliga rättigheter i Norra Kaukasien, Rysslands mest turbulenta region. Mord, kidnappningar och tortyr tillhör vardagen. I går fäste Mutsolgov ett armband kring sin handled som kan rädda hans liv.   Robert Hårdh, chef för Civil Rights Defenders, var glad och stolt när han presenterade det nya överfallsskyddet, som ingår i ”Natalia Project”. – Det här är ett sätt att förbättra säkerheten för många av de utsatta människor som arbetar för människorättsorganisationer. Dels är skyddet kopplat till fem personer i absolut närhet till den skyddade personen, familj eller arbetskamrater. Dels är skyddet kopplat till vårt kontor i Stockholm, vilket gör att vi kan få ut information till hela världen om att någon är i livsfara och därmed få myndigheter och regeringar att agera, säger Robert Hårdh. Skyddet har också en gps-sändare, vilket gör att man kan spåra en eventuell kidnappad person och ingripa snabbt.   ”Natalia Project” är till minne av Natalja Estemirova. Hon var under många år en av Norra Kaukasiens främsta företrädare för människorättsfrågor. Otroligt engagerad, också rationell och konstruktiv. Hon arbetade, förutom för människorättsorganisationen Memorial, som journalist för lokala tidningar och tv-stationer och kunde som få andra hjälpa utsatta och få ut information om övergrepp och mord. Den 15 juli 2009 tvingades Estemirova in i en bil strax utanför sin bostad i centrala Groznyj, huvudstad i delrepubliken Tjetjenien. Några timmar senare hittades hon mördad i ett dike, skjuten med två skott i huvudet. Det är ingen vild gissning att Tjetjeniens president Ramzan Kadyrov låg bakom attacken. Estemirovas arbete var en nagel i ögat på Kadyrov och...