What is SARA?
The SARA mobile friendly website was created by and is maintained by the South Eastern Centre Against Sexual Assault & Family Violence (SECASA) in Melbourne.
Anyone in Australia can use SARA to anonymously report sexual assault. Reporters can describe the incident and the offender in as much or as little detail as they choose.
SARA is the only Australia-wide anonymous reporting mechanism for sexual assault.
What happens with the information you submit?
Informing the Police
SARA software assigns each report a number and notes the time and date the report was made. A SECASA worker reads each report. Reports that could be helpful to Police are passed on to the Police in the State in which the offence took place, but your IP address and contact details are removed before the data is sent..
The decision to investigate further is made by the Police. We have no control over SARA information once it has been given to the Police.
What happens if you supply your name and contact details
If you supply your name and contact details our duty worker will call the number you gave within 48 hours or on the next business day. SECASA’s caller ID will come up as ‘private number’ (we block our ID for your safety).
If the duty worker is not able to speak with you, she will send you a SMS message that SECASA is trying to contact you. She will give you her name and a phone number. Please ring this number to speak with us.
The duty worker will talk with you about how you would like to proceed. You may wish to talk with a counsellor, or want assistance to report to the police, or you may not want to take further action at this time.
Occasionally the Police will phone us requesting more information about a report, particularly when they have other complaints or know more about the offender. If this happens we may contact you.
All SARA reports are stored in a database. Access to the database is by secure login only and restricted to authorised SECASA staff. All access to the database is done using high grade secure internet connections.
We remove identifying data from all reports that are more than 12 months old. The remaining data is stored for research purposes.
Website usage statistics
Like most websites, SARA collects non-personal site traffic information. This includes various log information such as the pages visited on the SARA site, the type of browser used and the date and time of visits. It also collects the internet protocol (IP) address of the computers who visit. This IP address is not passed on to Police. Non-personal information can not be used to identify the individual user.
This information is used to help us develop the website and better cater to the needs of SARA users.
De-identified SARA data may be stored and used for research purposes.
We will never:
- Sell information about individuals to anyone else, or use the information for marketing purposes.
- Publish any identifying information submitted in the reports.
- Contact an offender, however the Police may do so if the offender is a part of an ongoing investigation.