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#parent | #kids | Parents warned to check kids’ phones for these 15 apps which are ‘open to cyber bullies and paedophiles’ | #parenting | #parenting | #kids


Parents in North Staffordshire are being urged to check their children’s phones for 15 apps which police say are open to cyber bullies and paedophiles.

The list – which has been shared on social media by schools in North Staffordshire – includes ‘dangerous’ dating apps and chat tools.

Included in the list is ‘MeetMe’, a dating app which allows people to connect with others depending on where they live, as well as ‘LiveMe’ which is a live-streaming app which uses GPS signals to share videos. This means users can find a person’s exact location.

The list also includes some of the most popular chat apps which police say could be ‘potentially dangerous’. It includes WhatsApp, TikTok and Snapchat all of which can be used to send messages and videos – as well as photographs – to anyone online.


Here’s the full list:

Whisper

Whisper is an anonymous social network that promotes sharing secrets with strangers. It also reveals a users location so people can meet up.

TikTok

TikTok is a new mobile device app that is popular with kids and used for creating and sharing short videos. With very limited privacy controls, users are vulnerable to bullying and explicit content.

Hot or Not

Encourages users to rate your profile, check out people in their area and chat with strangers. The goal of this app is to hook up.

Live.Me

Live.Me is a live streaming video app that uses geolocation to share videos so that users can find out a broadcaster’s exact location. Users can earn ‘coins’ as a way to ‘pay’ minors for photos.

Ask.FM Ask.FM is known for cyber bullying. The app encourages users to allow anonymous people to ask them questions.

Calculator%

Calculator% is only one of several secret apps used to hide photos, videos, files and browser history.

Holla

Holla is a self-proclaimed ‘addicting’ video chat app that allows users to meet people all over the world in just seconds. Reviewers say they have been confronted with racial slurs, explicit content and more.

Kik

Kik allows anyone to contact and direct message your child. Kids can bypass traditional text messaging features, Kik gives users unlimited access to anyone, anywhere, anytime.

Snapchat

Snapchat is one of the most popular apps in recent years. While the app promises users can take a photo or video and it will disappear, new features including ‘stories’ allow users to view content for up to 24 hours.

Grindr

Grindr is a dating app geared towards gay, bisexual and transgender people. The app gives users options to chat, share photos and meet up based on a smart phone’s GPS location.

Meetme

Meetme is a dating social media app that allows users to connect with people based on geographic proximity. As the app’s name suggests, users are encouraged to meet each other in person.

Skout

Skout is a location based dating app and wesbite. While users under 17-years-old are unable to share private photos, kids can easily create an account using a different age.

WhatsApp

Whatsapp is a popular messaging app that allows users to send texts, photos, make calls and video chats worldwide. Whatsapp uses an internet connection on smart phones and computers.

Badoo

Badoo is a dating and social networking app where users can chat, share photos and videos and connect based on location. While the app is intended for adults only, teens are known to create profiles.

Bumble

Bumble is similar to the popular dating app ‘tinder.’ However, it requires women to make the first contact. Kids have been known to use Bumble to create fake accounts and falsify their age.

On their website, Staffordshire Police says cyberbullying and online harassment can be classed as criminal offences and offer the following advice:

Tips to stay safe online

Think before you post – when posting or commenting on the internet, consider what you say and what effect this may have. Never post comments that are abusive or may cause offence to others.

Keep personal information personal – do not say anything or publish pictures that might later cause you or someone else embarrassment. Be aware of what friends post about you, or reply to your posts, particularly about your personal details and activities.

Make the most of privacy settings – keep your profiles closed, allowing access only to your chosen friends and family

Telling someone

Bullying and harassment can be hard to talk about but you should not deal with it alone. If you think you are being bullied try and talk to a trusted adult such as a parent, family member, carer or teacher or a friend. They will be able to help and support you.

For confidential help and advice take a look at:

– NSPCC

– Bullying UK

– Kooth

– Childline

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