“And you shall surely protect yourself.” ( Devarim / Deut 4,15) – Venishmartem Meod lenafshotechem.
A commandment of the Torah. This commandment applies to keeping safe and healthy. Yes – like any good parent – G-d wants you to be safe and healthy.
Three safety concerns in purchasing a cell phone –
is it spiritually safe?
is it productively safe?
is it physically safe?
1. Spiritually Safe
Assume that your child will use your phone. Thus safeguards should be taken into account before purchasing the phone. Some opt for no internet phones. Thus there is no temptations to surf to improper sites. This is the safest route. Thus many orthodox Jews have a flip phone or a no-internet phone to detour this problem.
Others buy the smart phone but put the app locks on. They download an app that one must put a code in order to access a particular app. On Apple phones one can remove apps altogether from the phone. So one can remove the browser. No browser – no internet.
There are other things to do – but if you want more info – see the article on 70 ways to protect your home from bad influences of the Internet.
2. Productively Safe
Some think that the latest smart phone will help you be more productive. Perhaps. Some studies find that the time used surfing, texting and social media-ing counters all gains in productivity. Do the research. And know yourself.
Time is a resource that is limited. Waste a minute – you can never get it back.
3. Physically Safe
The first thing I look for before purchasing a cell phone is it’s EMF (electro-magnetic field) or SAR (Specific Absorption Rate (SAR)).
A site that makes it easy to look it up is phone more. Type in the model of phone you are interested in and scroll down and see the SAR rating. It will usually give you two ratings one for the head and one for the body. You can also check the FCC site above for ratings as well.
Both should be less than .80 but the more important rate is the head SAR. When selecting a phone – between choices – I try to choose the phone that has the lowest SAR. I prefer ones that have less than .6 to the head. Some phones have ratings as low as .21 for the head. The lower the better.
If you cant find SAR level on the above sites – you can google – the exact model of phone and SAR rating.