Ugly Mugs for Android is a safety app for sex workers in the UK, Ireland, Canada, Sweden, Norway and Finland.
The app automatically screens incoming and outgoing calls and text messages, and alerts the phone user if they have have contact with a number that is in the Ugly Mugs database.
In order to use this app, you have to have an account with Ugly Mugs. You can register for an account on the Ugly Mugs website for your country; UglyMugs.ie, UglyMugs.uk, UglyMugs.ca, UglyMugs.se, UglyMugs.no or UglyMugs.fi.
In order to use this app, you will need to have a phone running the Android operating system. Popular phones that run Android are Samsung, HTC and Sony. Your Android phone needs to have access to the Internet, either via Wi-Fi or data. The app will be unable to check the Ugly Mugs database if it cannot access the Internet. Many phones are sold with an adult content block switched on by default. You should check if your phone has an adult content block, and remove it if it does, as Ugly Mugs may be considered adult content.
You will be asked to give the app permission to perform some functions when installing. These permissions are explained below if you would like further information about any of them:
Your messages, Read SMS or MMS, receive SMS - The app does not read your messages but it automatically captures the number that you are sending to or receiving from so that it can check it against the Ugly Mugs database.
Network communication, Full Internet access - The app requires full internet access in order to fetch information from the Ugly Mugs database.
Phone calls, Intercept outgoing calls, read phone status and ID - The app requires permission to capture the telephone number of your incoming and outgoing calls so that it may check them against the Ugly Mugs database. It also requires permission on the phones status so it knows if you are currently making a call or receiving a call. It cannot listen to calls.
Services that cost you money, Send SMS messages - The app cannot send messages but requires permission to access this feature in order to capture the telephone number of the outgoing SMS messages in order to check them against the Ugly Mugs database.
System tools, Display system-level alerts - The app requires permission to show you an alert whenever an active Ugly Mug report is found.
Using the App
Once installed the app will ask you to select your country and login with your Ugly Mugs username and password.
The main menu screen (after you have logged in) provides the following options:
This is where you can turn alerts on and off. When notification status is turned off, the application will still check all calls/texts against the Ugly Mugs database but it will not popup alerts, it will only add entries to the alerts table.
This is the alerts table, an alert is added to the table every time you have contact with a number that is listed in the Ugly Mugs database. The alerts table shows you whether the alert is red or blue, the type of alert (call received, call made, SMS received or SMS sent), the date/time, the telephone number and the number of reports. A red alert indicates the number matches one or more serious incidents in Ugly Mugs. A blue alert indicates the number matches one or more incidents in Ugly Mugs, but none of the incidents is marked as serious. There is a built in browser so that you can click on any alert and go to the website to browse the Ugly Mugs report(s) relating to the number. You can clear the alerts table by pressing the clear button.
This will keep the app running in the background.
Log out & exit
This will log you out of the app and the app will no longer check numbers off the Ugly Mugs database until you login again.
Alert popups occur when you receive a call from a number listed in the Ugly Mugs database. Press the X button to remove the popup and answer/decline the call.