Innovating the problem away? A critical study of anti-rape technologies

Deborah White*, Lesley McMillan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
1623 Downloads (Pure)


In the context of expanding preventative strategies for addressing sexual violence, we are witnessing the emergence of an array of new anti-rape technologies targeted at women. These tools, promoted primarily through the internet, include a variety of apps for mobile phones, signal and alarm emitting wearable technologies, and internal and external body devices. Based on analyses of websites promoting such instruments, we critically examine these devices with respect to their possible benefits, limitations and unintended physical, social and legal consequences for women. We suggest that unanticipated outcomes may undermine both victims and their cases; those the technologies are ostensibly designed to help.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1120-1140
Number of pages21
JournalViolence against Women
Issue number10
Early online date21 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2020


  • rape
  • sexual assault
  • prevention
  • technologies


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