The Upper Moreland PBA would like to remind parents to continue to monitor your child’s cellphone use. Free apps can be easily downloaded and may appear to be harmless, such as for posting pictures or chatting with friends. What many do not realize is that these apps can be used for illegal or harmful activities, such as, posting and/or exchanging explicit photos, videos, and language. Some apps may even document the user’s cellphone location without the user’s consent.
With the ease of use of many of these apps, whether through a cellphone or online, it’s easy for strangers to make contact with your child and continue to remain anonymous throughout the world.
Please speak to your child about the dangers of using these apps and to be mindful not to share any explicit photographs of themselves or others.
BUMBLE: Bumble is similar to the popular 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.
KIK: Kik allows anyone to contact and direct messages to your child. Kids can bypass traditional text messaging features. Kik gives users unlimited access to anyone, anywhere, anytime.
HOLLA: Holla is a self-proclaimed “addicting” video chat app that allows users to meet people all over the world in seconds. Reviewers say they have been confronted with racial slurs, explicit content, and more.
ASK.FM: Ask.FM is known for cyber bullying. The app encourages users to allow anonymous people to ask them questions.
HOT OR NOT: 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.
INSTAGRAM: Instagram allows sharing pictures, but many kids are now creating fake accounts to hide content from parents. Kids also like to text using Instagram because messages are deleted once a user leaves the conversation.
BURN BOOK: Burn Book allows a user to post anonymous rumors about people through audio messages, texts, and photos.
SNAPCHAT: Snapchat is a popular app that promises users they can take a photo/video and it will disappear. Recent features include “stories,” which allows users to view content for up to 24 hours. Snapchat also allows users to see your location.
LIVE.ME: Live.Me is a live-streaming video app that uses geolocation to share videos so users can find out a broadcaster’s exact location. Users can earn “coins” as a way to “pay” minors for photos.
WHISPER: Whisper is an anonymous social network that promotes sharing secrets with strangers. It also reveals a user’s location so people can meet up.
CALCULATOR%: Calculator% is only one of several secret apps used to hide photos, videos, files, and browser history.
OMEGLE: Omegle is a free online chat website that promotes chatting anonymously with strangers.
YUBO: Yubo, formerly known as Yellow, is an app designed to allow teens to flirt with each other in a Tinder-like atmosphere.
WISHBONE: Wishbone is an app that allows users to compare kids against each other and rate them on a scale.