Aberdeen is one of the safest cities in the UK and been awarded five consecutive Purple Flags for safety in the city centre. Purple Flag status is given to UK towns and cities in recognition of the safety and security enjoyed by their residents, and Aberdeen is one of only two Scottish cities to receive accreditation.

Personal Safety

Always be aware of your surroundings, stick to well-lit, busy roads with pavements and avoid short cuts through parks or alleyways particularly when its dark. If you are cycling, make sure to wear reflective clothing and cycle in the same direction as the traffic.

Most bars, shops and restaurants will accept card payments. If you choose to use a cash machine always remember to hide your pin and keep your money out of view. 

Personal attack alarms are good to have, keep it in your pocket or somewhere you have easy access to so you can use it immediately if you need to. Choose a type which continues to sound if you activate and then drop it. You should not carry weapons such as knifes or pepper spray this is illegal and if caught in possession could result in a heavy fine. 


If you're sexually active, it is important to stay safe and to be informed. You should never feel pressured to have sex and everyone has the right to be safe in their relationships free from physical or verbal violence.

You must give your consent (permission) every time you have sex. Consent cannot be given if you are heavily under the influence of alcohol or drugs, are asleep or are being threatened with physical violence.

If someone tries to have sex with you without your consent, this is rape and against the law. The University does not tollerate sexual violence and harassment. If you are looking to report an incident of sexual violence or harassment please visit our online reporting tool or contact Student Advice & Support.

Partying Safely

Always plan your nights out. Let your friends know where you are going, who you are meeting and how you plan to get home at the end of the night. This is especially important if you plan to meet new people.

Look after your handbags and valuables and don’t leave any drinks unattended. Leaving your drink unattended can increase the risk of it being altered or spiked with dangerous substances.

Mixing alcohol with drugs can have an unpredictable and cumulative effect which can result in overdose and potential fatality. Using illegal substance is not recommended and being caught in possession in the UK can result in a fine or imprisonment.


Nightline is a student run listening and information service run by students for students at the University of Aberdeen. This service is run overnight by AUSA volunteers between 8pm – 8am throughout the academic year. You can contact them over the phone, via email, or using the online IM (Instant Messaging) service. It is a confidential, non-judgemental and non-advisory service for all your problems and concerns. Whether you have a personal problem, stressful situation, or simply want to know where the nearest takeaway is, Nightline is here to help.

Call: 01224 272829

Email: nightline@abdn.ac.uk

Campus Security

The University has its own Security Team based at Old Aberdeen and Foresterhill Campuses. The team work 24/7 and there is a Security Control Room at 9a Dunbar Street. Security can assist with a wide variety of both emergency and non-emergency security and personal safety matters. Security Control also receive and return items of lost property, of which there are often many. Security can be contacted on 01224 273327 (non-emergency) or 01224 273939 (emergency) 24/7.

Bike Security

Using a bicycle is a great way to keep fit and an affordable way to travel across campus and the city. If using a bike on campus we recommend you secure your bike, using a robust D shaped rigid lock to one of the fixed bicycle racks on campus. These areas are generally well lit and many are covered by CCTV or are overlooked.

Campus Covid19 Guidelines

For the Health and Safety of everyone on Campus, or on any University controlled building anywhere in Scotland, you will be expected to adhere to the following Guidelines.

Covid Campus Guidelines


SafeZone is a free app that connects you to the University security team if you ever need urgent help, first aid or if you have an emergency while on campus.

It also allows you to ‘Check In’ to University campuses automatically so we can gather data for the purposes of Test & Protect which helps us protect each other and reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Using the SafeZone app, along with following the current public health measures, will help us to stay safe when we are on campus.

It is important that we all download SafeZone so that when you are on campus you can be checked in. But don’t worry, you won’t have to do this every time you are on campus; the app can be set up to do it automatically so that you don’t have to even think about it. It will even check you out of campus too.

How to set up SafeZone

Automatic Check In - Recommended

After downloading the SafeZone app, register it using your University email address and mobile phone number

You now need to access your ‘Settings’ in your smartphone.

  • Scroll down to the SafeZone App and select
  • Click the Location arrow
  • Select ‘Always’ rather than ‘while using the App’
  • Then open the SafeZone App, click the ‘Settings’ option from the top left menu
  • Select the ‘Allow Automatic Check In’ button to green
  • This should then enable auto check in when in a zoned area on campus


Manual Check In

If you do not want to benefit from the automatic check in function you can manually check in when you arrive on campus.

After downloading the SafeZone app, register it using your University email address and mobile phone number.

  • You need to manually check in each time you come on campus using the ‘Check In’ button on the App Home screen
  • You are automatically checked out when you leave campus


We urge you to take every opportunity to register your presence when you can.

Online Safety and Security

The University has drawn up a set of guidelines to help remind us all of the importance of information security in every aspect of our daily work.


1. NEVER reveal your username and/or password – to anyone.Not even the Service Desk will ask you to reveal your password.

2. Passwords. Make them strong; keep them safe; never share them; and change them regularly.

3. Always lock your device – or log off completely – whenever you leave it unattended for even a short period of time.

  • It only takes a second or two for someone to access your files.

4. Always protect your user identity, at work and at home.

  • Don’t share access to your device with strangers.
  • Don’t store sensitive personal information, such as bank account numbers, on your device.
  • See our fact sheet for tips on how to spot email phishing scams

5. Ensure your sensitive data is safe and suitably encrypted when mobile.

  • It is mandatory that you encrypt any USB flash drive and/or other portable device that contains sensitive University data.
  • See our guidance on how to encrypt your device (click on the Encryption tab above), or buy a pre-encrypted USB stick from the Service Desk.

6. Always use electronic communication with care.

7. Use anti-virus software and keep it up to date.

  • The University of Aberdeen’s anti-virus solution for University owned and managed Windows and Mac computers is Microsoft System Center Endpoint Protection (SCEP). Click on the Anti-virus software tab at the top of the page for more about SCEP.
  • We are unable to offer anti-virus support for personal/home PCs, laptops, Macs and MacBooks. Please ensure your personal computer is protected from viruses and malware by running anti-virus software.

8. Be cautious when using the internet.

  • Never download files from an unknown source.

9. Never cause offence or break the law when using University IT facilities.

For help, advice, and to report ALL IT incidents, contact IT Services on: servicedesk@abdn.ac.uk 

Reporting a Crime and Support

If you need to report a crime call Police Scotland on 101 (or in an emergency 999).

You can also report a crime by visiting a local Police Station. The closest stations to our Old Aberdeen Campus are Tillydrone Police Station and Seaton Police Station. The closest stations to our Foresterhill Campus are Northfield Police Station and Rosemount Police Station. If you live the city centre the closest stations are North East Divisional Headquarters and Nelson Street Police Station.

You will always be treated with respect and dignity during any contact with the police.

Online Report Real Support

The University does not tolerate any form of discrimination and will not condone any acts of harassment, bullying, violence, or targeted hate. This includes all forms of gender-based violence and harassment; targeted abuse towards members of the LGBTQ+ community; racism or attacks against someone based on their ethnicity; and all hate towards any protected characteristic (such as age and religion). We are committed to providing safe and welcoming campuses for every member of our University community.

Report an incident that has happened to you or someone you know.

Victim Support

Confidential, free support for victims and witnesses of crime. For support call 0800 160 1985, 8am-8pm, Monday-Friday or visit the website for more information.

Support and Wellbeing

If you have been affected by crime or are worried about someone you know help and support is available.