Is your kid Techno savvy? Do you feel like you’ve lost control of their web activities and they might be stumbling on dangerous things? Well, it’s understandable. Nowadays, parents lead a busy life and it’s somehow difficult to keep up with each and every emerging trend on the internet that may cause potential harm to your teenage kids.
One thing you surely can’t keep up with is the number of mobile Apps out there. The rate at which App developers both experts and amateurs are coding new apps is fascinating. While some of these apps might be very helpful to teenagers, some are potentially dangerous and expose them to social ills such as revenge porn, explicit content, sex predation, character assassinations and cyber bullying.
Worse still, dangerous App exposes your family to cyber threat such as Identify Theft, scams, and others you don’t want to be part of. So, let’s get started with 10 dangerous apps for kids – before move onto their detailed descriptions, below you go with the list:
Updated June 2016!
- Yik Yak
- Kik Messenger
It’s an anonymous iOS messaging App more popular with US college students. It allows one to send anonymous short messages, yaks of up to 200 characters to at least 500 others users within a one mile radius. Since the messages are said to be anonymous, users are encouraged to say anything which ever they like it. There is no age limit on Yik Yak implying your teenage kids could be part of an open chat room with strangers.
Danger: Yik Yak may not be as anonymous as claimed by its developers. Researchers at SilverSky labs discovered a textbook vulnerability that circumvents the anonymous clause. The App exposes your kids to obscene short messages, derogatory language, intense bullying and character assassination jibes. Actually, most schools in US have banned the use of Yik Yak on school Wi-Fi and you definitely should not have it on your home Wi-Fi either.
An instant messaging app popular within teens. It rides its popularity from the fact that messages and pictures sent are not saved on the phone history or network provider’s logs. This makes it difficult to follow up on what your kids have been up to all day long. Kik has over 100 million active users sharing sketches, picture, memes and videos without revealing their identity.
Danger: The promised anonymity on kit encourages kids to “sext” and send nude pictures to their sext buddies also known as “Kik buddy”. With time Kik buddies get comfortable with each and may reveal their Kik usernames through other social sites such as Facebook, or Reddit. Worse still, Kik lacks parental controls and anyone irrespective of age can be on Kik. This exposes teens to sex predators, obscene content, and derogatory language without your knowledge.
SnapChat allows one to send snaps that automatically delete themselves within a set time frame. The sender sets the time it takes before the picture deletes itself from the recipient phone. The App also sends you a notification if the recipient tries to take a screenshot of the image.
Danger: Most if not all pictures sent on SnapChat are nude selfies and other inappropriate images. While the snaps maybe deleted from the recipient phone, they are never deleted from the web as claimed by SnapChat developers. Not long ago, hackers leaked thousands of Snapchatters ‘deleted’ snaps on the internet after hacking one SnapChat database. Worse still some Snapchatters have found ways of taking screenshot of sent pictures without the sender knowing. This makes your kids victims of revenge porn besides exposing them to explicit content at a tender age.
Yet another dangerous app for teens that made news headline in 2013 after a 12 year old girl was lured into a motel, raped and killed by another 21 years old whisper user. Whispers allows users to anonymously confess their inner most secrets to other users within a mile radius. Although your name is totally obscured, Whisper can still broadcast your location and allow one to search nearby users.
Danger: Whispers allows teens to send and receive derogatory images with superimposed text. This makes teens potential victims of intense cyberbullying and character assassination jibes. Whispers is open to users of all ages. This exposes your kids to sex predation and awkward social behavior at teen age.
This app is designed to beat the parents monitoring trap. It hides other dangerous app that your kids may have installed on their phones. Become active and take action, in case you find poof of your kids’ phone.
Danger: Poof on its own is not dangerous app for teens but the fact that it hides other dangerous apps like whispers Yik Yak or SnapChat – makes it lethal. Luckily, the App has been pulled down from app stores but if your kid had installed before then, chances are that they are still using to hide something from you.
It is an anonymous video chatting App, which allows users to video chat with strangers without revealing there identity. Omegle users are only identified as “You” and “Stranger”. It has no age limit and users do not need to register their personal details. Omegle allows users to link up their Facebook accounts in order to find chat partners with same interests.
Danger: First, no parent want their kids to be chatting with strangers online. Secondly, Linking Omegle to Facebook makes it much easier to unmask the identities of chat partners. Worse still, chat partners may reveal their identities after getting comfortable with each other. Omegle put your kids at high risk of Sex predation and identity theft crimes by online scammers.
Tinder is a match making app and definitely not something you want for your teenage kids. It allows one to create dating profile and view images of suitable matches within their locality. If two tinder users like each, they organize for a potential face-to-face hook up. All you need to be on tinder is a Facebook account that shows you’re above I8 years. Again, that is easy to fix.
Danger: First, romantic relationship is not something you want for your teenage kids. Secondly, Tinder encourages hook up with strangers exposing your kids to Scammers, Sex predators and other con artist who will only rake havoc in your family.
Vine allows one to record and share a 6 seconds video. Vine is dangerous App for teens when used to send sexually explicit short videos to influence sharing and seek approval from peers. Although there is a Vine Kids App which is more safe, teens will always want to use the uncensored vine app.
Danger: Vine exposes your kids to explicit sexual videos and scarily video that might negatively impact their growth pattern. The App also allows one to search for Porn videos, exposing teens to sexual predators who use them as bait. It also is possible to search for users by location and further connect through other social sites like Facebook, which can expose the teenagers easily to the criminals.
Popularly known as “Bang with Friends”, Down is more third party Facebook App. It enables one to sort out their Facebook friends in different categories such those who you would like to hook up with, “bangables” ones. It markets itself as an easy way to find friends “who are down for the Night” explaining it ALL why it’s a dangerous App for the teens.
Danger: It goes without saying that the Down encourages irresponsible relationships and that’s not something you would want for your kids. Also the categorization may make teens feel left out, a factor that may influence them to do crazy things to gain acceptance from their peers. Down is a dangerous App that exposes your teenage kids to sex predators and all other types of online fraudsters.
It’s a popular social networking portal for kids. It allows to ask questions and get answers from others anonymously. Due to the promised anonymity, the app encourage inappropriate language and awkward social networking behavior.
Dangers: Ask.FM is a famous site for cyberbullying and has been linked with many cases of teen suicide in the past. The app also exposes your kid to online scammers who use it to squeeze potentially useful personal information from target kids.
All you want as a parent is to secure the safety of kids on the web. While that may sound easy, it is practically difficult to do that without stepping on their personal privacy from time to time. To avoid strained relationships with your teenage kids, it important you discuss the dangers of having some of these dangerous apps on their Phones. The goal is to bring up an individual who can manage their online activities of their own and not to impose internet restriction. However, you must maintain a tight leash on your kid’s web activities.
Further recommended reading: How to Keep Your Family Safe Online
Top/Featured Image: By Nemo / Pixabay
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