White House launches app competition to prevent sexual assault

The White House challenged software developers on Wednesday to create an application to help young adults prevent sexual assault and dating violence.

The competition, called “Apps Against Abuse,” encourages developers to create applications that allow women to designate trusted friends or emergency contacts and to check in with those contacts, especially in an emergency. 

Additionally, the applications should provide access to resources and information on sexual assault. 

According to the White House, one in five young women will be a victim of sexual assault during her college years. Often the offender is an acquaintance of the victim. 

“Just as technology is changing the way young people communicate with each other every day, it’s also changing the way young people can protect themselves and their friends from becoming victims of sexual violence,” Vice President Biden said.

"We want to tap into the creativity of the American people to empower women who wish to communicate distress in a trusted and immediate way," said Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra.

The White House will announce the winners of the competition in October.