Are Your Kids On These Risky Apps?

By: Robert Siciliano | December 8, 2015 (Edited July 7, 2017)

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You should know all about any smartphone applications your kids are using, as these apps could promote various problems.

Temporary Apps

  • Their messages and images self-destruct.
  • Snapchat is one such app, allowing users to self-destruct messages in just seconds.
  • But usually, the time limit is long enough for the recipient to take a screenshot. And who knows whether or not that recipient will post the screenshot in cyberspace-where it will be immortal.
  • In addition to that possibility, snapchats can be recovered.
  • Burn Note is an app that sends only text: one word at a time.
  • Having this app is not necessary for receiving a message through it. The recipient will simply get a link to a Burn Note text.
  • It can encourage cyberbullying, as it will leave no record.
  • Slingshot is an odd app that requires the recipient of a photo or video to send the sender a shot of something before viewing the sent images. After they're viewed they vanish.
  • Every time someone sends something using Slingshot, their city is revealed unless they decline use of location services.

Another Temporary App

  • The LINE application encompasses text, video, group chats and voice messaging, among other alluring features.
  • One such feature is "Hidden Chat," which self-destructs messages per the user's time limit. But the messages can reveal location of the user.
  • Not all of LINE's features are free. For instance, the games and emojis come with a fee.

Anonymous Apps

  • The Whisper app encourages confessional or cathartic posts to share with this app's community.
  • Some of the posts can be brutal to read by a sensitive teen. Or, they can be very sexually explicit.
  • The Ask.fm app encourages kids to anonymously ask questions for anonymous answers. Naturally, an application like this will attract the creeps and bullies.
  • The Omegle app provides an anonymous chat client; kids can discuss anything they desire, which means a lot of lewdness and other inappropriate content. This sexually explicit chat room can attract predators, as users are paired up with strangers. Though kids use this app, it's not designed for minors.
  • Cloaq allows users to post text and images anonymously. The anonymity encourages language.

Robert Siciliano personal and home security specialist to BestHomeSecurityCompanys.com discussing burglar proofing your home on Fox Boston. Disclosures.

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