By: Savannah Smith | 09-19-2017 | News
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MIT Engineers Invent “Smart Bra” to Prevent Sexual Assaults

The wonders of science can be used to fight sexual harassment. A group of MIT engineers have developed a wearable ‘sticker‘ that can serve as a security alarm for the body. Such can be attached to a bra for women to serve as deterrence for “forceful grabbing” and other kinds of sexual harassment.

The sticker can be placed on a woman’s bra, and said device can then detect “forceful grabbing” and set off an alarm, then notify a set of pre-approved list of contacts giving details about the wearer’s location and can start recording surrounding noises. The contact list can serve as a woman’s safety circle composed of family members or closest friends.

The creators of the said device also have a ready answer - and solution - to those who might object that there may be people, including women, who enjoy consensual sex that is also kinda rough. In such cases, when there’s no rape or harassment involved, the wearer may opt to press the “consent” option on her smart bra. The wearer will be prompted to categorically state whether she is in agreement with what’s happening or not.

No response would mean the bells and whistles would go off.

MIT Media Lab researcher Manisha Mohan explained the effects of an activated strip and said:”The safety circle receives information about the geolocation of the victim, and also one member of that group receives a phone call, and the call records all the noises.”

The alarm should deter the attacker, prompt the safety circle to respond and if possible rescue their loved one in trouble. But in the event that the attacker persists and the evil act is carried out, at least the recordings can be used as information for potential legal proceedings in the future.

Even with the good intentions behind the device, there are obviously weaknesses in the application. For one, women can’t rely on the product to “protect” them because it will not. There’s also the potential of “cry wolf” scenario to set in with the many things that can go wrong, and the possibility for false alarms.


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