Recommendation: Digital Security
Please read this checklist on our Resources Page to sanitize phones and devices to minimize risk through the data on your phones and devices.
Encrypted Communication Apps:
Signal App (https://signal.org/) Signal offers end-to-end encrypted communications between two or more devices using the Signal App. All messages are end-to-end encrypted by default. By design, even the Signal Foundation cannot see the contents of your messages.
Important! Do not use Telegram for secure communications between more than 2 people. Group messages on Telegram are NOT encrypted. All Telegram messages are NOT encrypted by default. To enable end-to-end encryption between two devices using Telegram, you need to enable secret chat.
Mesh Communication Apps:
If cell phone towers do not work, these apps may help you communicate with each-other. Please download these digital resources when you are fully charged as soon as possible.
F-Droid (https://f-droid.org) (Android only). If two phones both have F-Droid, they can exchange apps even without Internet.
Tutorial here (https://f-droid.org/en/tutorials/swap/).
Briar (https://briarproject.org/download-briar/) (Android only). Briar lets you connect with and send end-to-end encrypted messages to other Briar users over Bluetooth or Wifi when you're in range. This "mesh network" only works if people are close enough for Bluetooth (30m) or Wifi (100m max).
Bridgefy (https://bridgefy.me/) (iOS/Android). Bridgefy uses Bluetooth to send end-to-end encrypted messages (updated using the Signal Protocol since October 2020) from your phone to your friends’, over a distance of 100 meters / 330 feet (almost the size of a football field). Your message hops on other Bridgefy users’ phones until it reaches its destination.
Note: Please note that ANYONE in the area can send or receive a "broadcast" message, so only use the "chats" option for secure and valid communications. Please also note that there are advertisements at the bottom of the chat screen, above the screen navigation.
Other online safety resources:
Checklist for Afghans: Minimize Risk Through Data on Phones and Devices
Immigration Resources (Click to Expand)
Do you have an approved visa? Then you must complete the Repatriation Assistance Request from the U.S. Embassy.
Do you want to check the status of the Special Immigration Visa you applied for? Use this link to do so, but it only works if your case number starts with “KBL.”
If you have not applied for a visa, but think you may be eligible for one, please use these resources:
If you do not believe you are eligible for an SIV or Family Reunification Visa, please read the guidance by the Refugee Processing Center regarding the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program Instructions for Afghan Priority 2 (P2) visa.
Those who do not qualify for the SIV program, but have nonetheless helped the U.S. during its time in Afghanistan, can take advantage of a "Priority 2" or "P2" designation, which was created in August 2021. The P2 designation is available to those who, unlike their Priority 1 (P1) counterparts, did not meet the minimum "time in service" eligibility requirement for the SIV program but still "work or worked as employees of contractors, locally-employed staff, interpreters/translators" for the U.S. government, U.S. or NATO forces; were employees of a U.S. government-funded program or project in Afghanistan supported through a U.S. government grant or cooperative agreement; or were employed in Afghanistan by a U.S.-based media organization or nongovernmental organization. The goal of the P2 program is to expand access beyond the SIV program to those whom the State Department has designated as eligible "by virtue of their circumstances and apparent need for resettlement." To qualify for P2 status, however, Afghans must get themselves out of Afghanistan, as the U.S. will not start processing them as refugees until they are in another country.
Finally, you can also look for similar programs run by other countries in addition to those in the United States.
Compilation of Resources for Afghans in country, in-transit, or resettled in the United States.
Refugee resources (Click to Expand)
More resources coming soon.
If you do not believe you are eligible for an SIV or family reunification visa, our current information suggests that you are unlikely to be evacuated at the airport. Instead of proceeding to the airport, please read the guidance here regarding the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program Instructions for Afghan P2. You can also look for similar programs run by other countries in addition to those in the United States.