td411 is an app built specifically for teens to provide information on teen dating abuse and healthy relationships. It includes a Dating Quiz to help identify if there could be a concern and provides important national hotlines and other resources if the user wants to talk to an advocate. There's also an option to search by zip code to find local resources in Connecticut. The app is available in both English and Spanish.
What We Love:
The app is available in both English and Spanish and switching from one language to the other is a simple process within the app itself as opposed to being two different apps.
Focus groups of teens were used in the development of the app's content, which is a great way to help ensure that it is truly accessible and user-friendly to the specific audience it's intended for.
Safety & Privacy Considerations / Tips:
- When tested, the "Getting Help in Connecticut" feature, which allows users to search for local resources by zip code, did not work. Tests on various phones and on both iPhone and Android came up with errors and did not show any resources. Statewide and national hotlines can be found within the app under "Helpful Websites."
- The app includes information on the mandatory reporting obligations of professionals in Connecticut when they are working with minors. When deemed a mandatory reporter by the state, a professional may have to report to certain authorities when they learn that a minor has been abused. In the app, it states that mandatory reporters in CT have to report abuse to the minor's parents, the Department of Children and Families, and/or the police. However, state law does not require mandatory reporters to inform the parents of the minor. It is critical that survivors of abuse have accurate information on their rights and any limitations to their confidentiality so they can make an informed decision when disclosing abuse. Teens can always contact the statewide hotline or a national hotline to talk, learn about options, or get general support without giving any identifying information.
- There is not an option to password protect this app on your phone. If there are concerns about someone physically accessing the phone to look through it, password protect the phone itself or access this information another way.
- The "Tell Us Your Story" section enables users to share basic information about themselves and what they have have experienced.
- It's important for users to note that the basic information requested (First Name, Age, Grade, and Zip Code) can be identifying and it's important for survivors to carefully choose what information they want to share and when. Although all fields require a response, users can opt to answer some questions inaccurately. If concerned about privacy, users should also be cautious that their narrative story is not identifying.
- The story is actually submitted using and email account associated with the phone and not through the app itself. This means a couple things. First, your personal email address will be available to the staff at the Coalition who are receiving the emails. Second, a copy of the email, including the basic information and story shared, will live in the sent folder of the email account used. It's important that survivors consider this and who could have access to their accounts before submitting anything this way.
- There is currently no detailed information explaining how the information being collected is used, maintained, or destroyed.