The world can be a scary place, but the good news is that with today's innovative safety technology, you don't have to be a trained special agent to keep yourself safe.
We DO have former Secret Service Special Agent and security and safety expert, Evy Poumpouras, here to demonstrate some useful personal safety devices. Just carrying these items with you could prevent potentially unsafe situations from escalating and help you protect yourself if you're in immediate danger.
"You need to be aware of your surroundings — situational awareness," Evy points out, but there are "tools and devices you can have in your day-to-day life that can help [keep you safe]."
Here are four safety gadgets that everyone should know about, according to the former Secret Service Special Agent.
While Evy always recommends getting your own drinks when you're out at a bar or in a public place, this piece of smart tech is an effective way to remove any doubt and test your drink for any drug tampering.
SipChip claims to have a 99.3% accuracy rate, and one drop of liquid is all it takes. Here's how it works: Stick your finger in your drink and drop the liquid onto the SipChip. In about 30 seconds you'll see results. Two lines mean you're in the clear; one line means your drink has been drugged.
See Evy demonstrate how to test drinks with SipChip and read the results in the video above.
invisaWear is a company that makes smart jewelry (necklaces, bracelets and keychains) that could save your life. The jewelry is connected to an app on your phone, where you add the phone numbers of five contacts who you'd want notified in case of an emergency. You can also enable an optional 9-1-1 feature.
If you feel like you're in danger, double press the back side of the charm to instantly send a text message with your GPS location to those five people and send an emergency alert to 9-1-1 dispatchers.
A tactical pen is made of strong metal that can be used to break glass in an emergency situation, like if you're trapped in a car, fire or flood, as well as for self-defense. When using a tactical pen to defend yourself from an attacker, you should target certain pressure points.
"This device is good for putting pressure on people, so for example if somebody comes near you, you can take it, push it on their wrist and it will jam it into their bone," Evy explains. Other pressure points to target are at the bottom of the nose, the throat and behind the ears.
(Watch her point out all the possible pressure points in the video above.)
This last tool will help give you peace of mind if you live alone or in a potentially unsafe neighborhood, or if someone you don't trust has a key to your house — especially if you don't have a security system in place. The bar door jammer is an added layer of protection that keeps your front or back door secure while you're at home by preventing the door from opening from the outside.
"Even if you have a great lock, people can break deadbolts, they can break the frame around the door, they can break the chain," Evy says. Plus, it's inexpensive and can withstand about 2,500 pounds of pressure.
"I used it for years and it really just helped me sleep soundly at home," the safety expert says.