2_26-1Today is Halloween and families everywhere are getting ready for trick-or-treating trips and parties. While Halloween is fun for people of all ages, coordinating plans can be stressful.

Here are four mobile apps for a fun and safe Halloween:

  1. Nextdoor
    1. Nextdoor is a neighborhood social media app that allows residents to communicate with each other privately. The app includes message boards for safety alerts, classifieds, recommendations and events. Through Nextdoor, residents can coordinate trick-or-treating plans, traffic routes, Halloween party plans and more.
  2. Family Locator by Life360
    1. Family Locator works by identifying devices’ locations. This app has a map screen that shows icons in accordance to a family member’s locations as well as the capability to notify parents if children go into a certain area that isn’t allowed. This app also has GPS capabilities to direct parents to their child’s exact location. Each of these apps is private exclusively to the family and does not share locations with unauthorized persons.
  3. UrbanSitter
    1. UrbanSitter takes care of any last-minute babysitting needs. The app has a database of available babysitters in the area, complete with parent reviews, video profiles and background checks. The app allows parents to book a sitter directly, with as little as one hour’s notice, and accepts major credit cards.
  4. First Aid by American Red Cross
    1. The Red Cross’s first aid app includes step-by-step video instructions for a variety of first-aid needs. Along with instructional videos, the app is fully 9-1-1 integrated, so users are able to call authorities directly in the case of an emergency.

With all app usage, users should be wary of what personal information they provide to the application service, and the network they access the application through. Unsecure networks, or compromised credentials, can lead to personal information theft if an unauthorized source gains access to application accounts.

Using Nextdoor, Family Locator, UrbanSitter and American Cross’s First Aid app can help alleviate the stress of last-minute Halloween planning. Some other helpful tips for smartphone safety include setting regular alarms to check on family members, labeling family contacts as ICE (In Case of Emergency) and using the flashlight options to help with night vision. Happy Halloween!