Samaritans closes controversial Radar app permanently

The app, designed to alert Twitter users that people they followed were feeling down, attracted criticism last year on data-protection grounds

App now permanently closed
App now permanently closed

The suicide-prevention charity Samaritans has permanently closed its controversial Samaritans Radar app, which was designed to alert Twitter users if people they followed appeared to be feeling low.

The charity suspended the app in November after more than 1,200 people signed an online petition claiming it breached the Data Protection Act.

A statement made yesterday by Catherine Johnstone, chief executive of Samaritans, said the charity had decided to close the app permanently in response to concerns about data protection and privacy issues raised by Twitter users.

"Samaritans is an organisation that is built on our ability to listen, and we take all feedback, both positive and challenging, very seriously," she said.

"We have ensured that any data associated with the app has been deleted and we have responded to all individual requests for information that we received."

She said the charity remained committed to providing the best service to anyone who might need its support and would use what it had learned from a survey about Samaritans Radar to develop new ways of supporting people online.

Johnstone announced last month that she planned to step down after more than six years in her role.

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