Mobile apps may not necessarily make you safer when travelling solo

As I was writing this article, I was fortunate enough to be at a conference in Florence, Italy. Like a growing number of women who travel overseas, whether for work or leisure, many of the trips I’ve done in recent years have been alone. And as a digital criminologist (as well as a mobile app enthusiast), I’m certainly a convert to the practical usefulness of technologies for travel.


There are a wide variety of smartphone apps that certainly make travelling alone easier to navigate.

Think offline maps, language translation, transport timetables, online ticket bookings, Uber, electronic banking, virtual private networks (VPNs, especially if using electronic banking on public Wi-Fi), and updating friends and family about one’s activities.

Then there are the more specific “safety” technologies. Some of them, like the Australian government’s Smart Traveller website, allow voyagers to register their intended whereabouts in case of a natural disaster or emergency. Travellers can also keep up to date with local risk and incident alerts, which can help you to steer clear if there is an incident in the city you’re headed to.Others, like BSafe and Bugle, allow you to easily notify your emergency contacts if you feel unsafe, or do not arrive at your intended destination.But while these apps might make



What causes traveller’s diarrhoea?

Business Standard

Millions of people, every year, have their vacations and business trips ruined when they get ‘traveller’s diarrhoea’ during travelling.A major cause of this is a bacteria called Enterotoxigenic E. coli, or ETC

Millions of people, every year, have their vacations and business trips ruined when they get ‘traveller’s diarrhoea’ during travelling.A major cause of this is a bacteria called Enterotoxigenic E. coli, or ETEC. Researchers have discovered how the bacteria work to cause the disease, in an effort to develop a preventive vaccine for travellers.The researchers studied samples taken directly from citizens who volunteered to become infected with ETEC.Ingesting contaminated food or water can lead to ETEC infection, which can cause diarrhoea for up to a week.

Considering the fact that up to 200 million people become infected annually, an estimated 1 billion days of human productivity are lost every year due to ETEC infections.Visiting the doctor to get vaccinated before a trip can prevent travellers from catching a disease. Unfortunately, there are no available vaccines to prevent ETEC infections, so travellers must constantly be concerned about what they eat and drink while on vacation.The group examined how ETEC behaved inside humans during infection compared to how it behaved in the laboratory.Lead author Alex Crofts said, “We think ETEC can sense the oxygen given off by our own cells as a cue to produce toxins.”The group now hopes to use this oxygen-sensitive ETEC response against the bacteria to prevent infections.ETEC is a global burden on society, and we are doing all we can to advance our understanding of the disease,” said study author Stephen Trent.


US issues new travel advisory for citizens, says India ‘user friendly’

The US on Wednesday issued a new travel advisory for countries including India, which its officials said is “user friendly” as it is based on ready-to-understand level of advice ranging from one to four.India has been ranked Level 2 (exercise increased caution) while Pakistan has been places in Level 3 (reconsider travel).

Level 1 advises travllers to exercise normal precaution, while Level 4, which has countries like Afghanistan, recommends “Do Not Travel”.Now every country has a travel advisory based on this system, which has replaced all the previous such advisories.”These improvements will provide US citizens with clear, timely, and reliable safety and

security information worldwide,” the State Department said.Placing India on Level 2, the State Department identified “crime and terrorism” for Americans to exercise increased caution.

However, it asks Americans not to travel to Jammu and Kashmir, except for eastern Ladakh and Leh and not to venture within 10 miles of the India-Pakistan border due to read more