AURA launches first crime trends report, aims to better understand South Africa


On-demand emergency services marketplace AURA has launched a report on South Africa’s high crime rate and what can be done to reduce it.

The first Crime Trends Report released this month examines the past year’s data on crime in South Africa. The statistics, which focus on key categories such as armed robbery, hijacking attempts and gender-based violence, bring together data from AURA’s nationwide network of more than 250 private security and medical companies. This is approximately 300,000 active users of the AURA Panic app and thousands of response vehicles.

The report gives the company a more complete picture of the crime landscape in South Africa and gives it a better understanding of how best to use technology to tackle it.

“By having a clear and accurate picture of the threats that South Africans face, technology can then be used to combat and even prevent crime,” says Warren Myers, CEO of AURA.

Myers adds that the comprehensive data allows the company to begin to understand how to apply technology to make South Africa a safer place for everyone.

AURA states that it is currently South Africa’s leading security and medical response market. It gathers and centralizes data from over 170 private security companies before applying AI to dispatch the nearest approved response vehicle.

Although the company’s current report focuses on 2021, AURA plans to release additional statistics every three months. This is part of the company’s commitment to benchmarking and examining trends closely against nationally and industry-reported data.

Myers acknowledges that the high crime rate causes great distress to the public and that prolonged exposure to crime only makes things worse for the people of South Africa.

“We should never become so numb to crime that we lose sight of its devastating impact on all levels of society. Fighting it quickly and smartly is an urgent priority,” says Myers.

The AURA Panic app saw increased usage when the user felt unsafe, not just if they needed emergency services as a victim of crime. For example, instances of car breakdowns on the side of the road or simply feeling uneasy about suspicious activity caused users to seek help more often, resulting in a steady increase in usage. in 2021.

Below are key highlights from AURA’s 2021 Trend Report:

Overall, incidents reported between 2020 and 2021 increased by 109% (partly due to user growth).

The third and fourth quarters of 2021 saw a 20.6% increase in reported incidents.

Reported diversions increased by 3.5% compared to the same period last year (a total of 4,973 in 2021).

The most common reasons South Africans called for help using an AURA-powered platform were suspicious activity, vehicle breakdown, altercation with a third party, and armed robbery.

The highest volume of reported incidents in 2021 occurred in Gauteng Province, followed by the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal (however, protest actions and armed robberies by province can be directly attributed to civil unrest that swept these parts of the country in the third quarter).

Domestic violence incidents in the second quarter increased by 47% compared to the first quarter, and AURA recorded an additional 45% increase in gender-based violence incidents between the second and third quarters. A further increase of 41% took place between Q3 and Q4.

In May 2021, medical incidents increased by 61% (however, this coincided with the third wave of COVID-19 infections in the country).

As a direct result of application usage, particularly the increase in market and response network, AURA’s response time was reduced to seven minutes and 41 seconds in the fourth quarter.

The report’s findings also reflect an increase in organized, syndicated and opportunistic crime. Myers adds that making it harder to participate in criminal activity in South Africa is key to reducing the crime rate and that technology is the way to do that.

“This will require developing and integrating technologies that criminals simply cannot avoid or outsmart. These technologies are here in AURA and it is extremely exciting to put them to good use for the benefit of all,” he says.


Comments are closed.