This article about apps to document abuse as evidence was last updated in 2021.
If you are experiencing abuse in any form, from anybody, you have a right to take action.
When you do this, you will need proof.
For more severe situations involving police intervention and/or violence, evidence is easier to prove. However, for domestic abuse behind closed doors and emotional abuse, getting the validation needed to take action can be desperately hard.
According to NoViolence.org.au, evidence to support your claim can include, amongst other things:
“Doctors’ reports, statements from witnesses, diary entries about the abusive behaviour, photos of any injuries, abusive emails or text messages, evidence of contact with domestic violence services.”
For this reason, there are a number of apps that track and record domestic abuse allowing you to discreetly record abusive events, along-side evidence, dates and other relevant information.
In this article we provide information on the latest apps available, alongside pros, cons and everything else you need to know.
Note: If you are experiencing domestic or emotional abuse and need help, please call the 1800RESPECT (
7 Apps to document abuse as evidence
It can be difficult to get help when you’re in an unhealthy and abusive relationship. Victims Voice is one of the best tools available when it comes to apps to document abuse and get legal justice. It helps you collect the right details in the right way to ensure that evidence will stand up in court. The app is available to buy for $39.95 (one-year subscription), but you may be able to get a free license through a Victims Voice Partner Member.
Apps to document abuse like ARC are designed to help people record their experience with an abuser and identify patterns of behaviour that makes them feel unsafe. Information saved in the app is encrypted and saved in the cloud to prevent loss and tampering. The ARC app is available to Australians experiencing family violence and is completely free to use.
DocuSAFE is one of our top free apps to document abuse. Created by the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) and funded by the Office on Victims of Crime (OVC), DocuSAFE lets you capture and share evidence of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, online harassment, and other forms of abuse. Take screenshots, photos and videos of abusive behaviour and share them securely with your support group, law enforcement and/or legal professionals. Available on the App Store and Google Play.
SmartSafe+ was created by the Domestic Violence Resource Centre in Victoria (DVRCV) to help women collect evidence of abuse and get an intervention order. The app is like a secure diary for voice memos, notes, photos and videos that you can use in court and legal proceedings. The app is in your phone but disguised like something else so it’s not obvious even if the abuser checks the device. To download SmartSafe+, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the DVRCV at (03) 8346 5200.
Apps to document abuse as evidence (cont.)
If you are looking for apps to document abuse but don’t want something obvious, try VoiceNote. It’s like a pinboard for virtual post-it notes. You can save text as well as voice notes (extremely useful when you can’t type on the keyboard or don’t want the abuser to know you’re recording a conversation). The app is very basic and doesn’t support photos or videos, but does the job if you only want voice-to-text documentation.
For people trapped in an abusive relationship, knowing the potential for danger is key to staying safe. RUSafe helps you do just that. After answering a few questions about your relationship, RUSafe will connect you to a nearby Domestic Violence Hotline or 911 if your life is in immediate danger. The questionnaire is based on a danger assessment system that draws upon the experiences of other domestic abuse survivors. The app also features a secure journal, a directory for domestic abuse support, and links to resources about safety and risk.
Mental Note is one of those apps to document abuse that look perfectly harmless. It’s a digital notepad that lets you combine pictures, voice recordings, text and drawings/handwriting on one page. Whilst not specifically designed for capturing evidence of domestic abuse, it’s a great tool to record your experiences as they happen, add media, or simply organise your thoughts. Password protection for private notes adds security to avoid prying eyes.