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TXT Safety Service Launched

Media release

3 July 2006

TXT Safety Service Launched

Vodafone customers concerned about their safety while out and about can now send a free* TXT message to 7233 (SAFE) to have their movements recorded on a central database.

The SAFE service is available to Vodafone customers** who are both in New Zealand and roaming on its global network, which spans more than 100 countries.

Vodafone Head of Corporate Responsibility Raphael Hilbron said today the SAFE initiative would provide Vodafone’s two million customers with additional peace of mind - no matter where in the world they were.

"You might be walking home alone, or getting into a car at night and realise that no-one knows where you are, or what time you're due at your intended destination. By TXTing some brief details about your movements to 7233, in the unlikely event you are reported missing the police may gain a valuable lead on what happened to you.”

The service works by customers sending a free TXT message to 7233 (SAFE) - for example, “leaving Viaduct @ 10pm to walk home to Ponsonby via Franklin Rd.” Vodafone records the date, time and content of the TXT against the mobile number. Each TXT sent to 7233 will be acknowledged by an automated response, which advises customers who feel in danger to call local emergency (111 in New Zealand) and request police assistance.

The SAFE service complements safety initiatives introduced by Vodafone, including its ICE campaign, which encourages people to list an In Case of Emergency contact by name and number in their mobile contact book under the moniker ICE.

All 3.8 million mobile customers in New Zealand are now covered by the SAFE initiative, which is also available on Telecom. The idea was suggested following the abduction and murder of German tourist Birgit Brauer.

*Note - normal roaming charges will apply for TXT messages sent to 7233 by Vodafone New Zealand customers who are travelling overseas.
**Customers on Vodafone New Zealand SIM cards only


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