In this hi-tech world, social media is all pervasive. These platforms have become cornerstone of contemporary communication. Despite it providing a fast and reasonable way to communicate with others around the globe, the recent Cambridge Analytica case has rekindled debates about the place of social media in our lives.
According to studies, teenagers spend more than 9 hours a day on social networking apps.
When we talk about these dangerous social networking apps, we don’t mean that the app itself is not safe. But we mean the abuse of these applications by people with veiled and toxic motives.
10 Most Popular & Worst Social Media Apps
Before you go ahead, it is important to let your kid understand the importance of privacy and security when they are using one of these not so friendly apps.
Parental awareness can be the greatest tool to keep your children safe from the outside world.
So, here we are revealing 10 most dangerous & worst social media apps for teens that harbor cyber predators.
Undoubtedly, Facebook tops our list of worst social media apps. It needs no introduction, came in 2004 the popularity of this platform is not behind the scenes.
According to recent stats, the most popular social networking app in the United States as of May 2018 is Facebook with 88.4% Mobile users, backed by Instagram with 60.1%.
Why it’s bad: Facebook is purported to elevate suicidal behavior in over sensitive people, impels narcissism and reveals information you might not want to share. Especially teens who pretty much put their whole lives on Facebook. From checking in to where they are to other activities they did- today’s iGeneration prefers to share every detail of their life.
Most negative aspect of teens is their ability to make such type of posts that can get them into a bunch of troubles. Facebook is indubitably not in good books. On daily basis we encounter child pornography cases and posting of wrong content which leads to serious legal repercussions.
Most popular social networking app ever, WhatsApp is surely an exceptional app which is not present in any smartphone today.
Why it’s bad: With 2 billion active users, Teens are said to be the most regular users of this king of messaging app. WhatsApp is Addictive! From teen to oldies, everyone uses this app.
While maybe a useful app for Adults, but not an appropriate choice for teens & tweens. The possible dangers come with this app is its use for abusive texts, cyberbullying, no age protection, and loopholes in the security of app users.
There’s no age barrier in creating WhatsApp account and there is no filter for adult content.
All Internet-based communications have fine probability of misuse. Just like Skype, a telecommunication software that enables the world’s conversations, is no exception.
Why it’s bad: Because data breach, viruses and pedophiles is concerned with Skype. First, the probability that the person you’re talking to behind the walls is posing as someone else, and may ask for personal details like (password, bank credentials etc.).
Second, as Skype is free, a commonly installed application that connects one system to another is mostly prone to transmitting viruses. Just an infectious thread can be attached to a file-sharing or instant messages.
Third, dealing with online communication app brings the possibility to get involved with stalker and sexual trappers. Here a need for parental control feature Skypito emerges to monitor their kids activities.
This platform allows user to send picture or short videos which can be viewed by the receiver for maximum 10 seconds (now it can be set on loop). This app is quite popular among school going and college going teens.
Why it’s bad: App’s self-destructive messages, provokes and exchanging of inappropriate content as whatever will be transmitted, it will automatically be deleted after a specific time frame.
Teens don’t realize how their private pictures can be screenshotted, though it notifies the user, but it cannot prevent the predator to steal your personal stuff. Several surveys say, that Snapchat tops the lists of apps that are not safe.
The largest & widely known photo sharing app has more than 800 Million monthly active users.
Why it’s bad: According to recent surveys, when asked teenagers to rank which social media platform impacted their mental health and wellbeing. Instagram was found to be on the top. Stalkers are mostly found here, searching for teens who have public profiles, they message them, admire their obscene pictures and trap them.
Parents should keep an eye on what type of pictures their kids upload and make them learn about the privacy settings.
One of the world’s most prevalent dating app to meet new people, basically uses your location from your mobile device to match you up with other Tinder users nearby. To increase your chances of getting matched up, the user can change its setting & optimize their profile by increasing location distance range.
Swipe, Match & Chat with Tinder!
Why it’s bad: There are lot of thing to love about Tinder, but the fake profiles and feign bots are no secret in this online dating world.
Based on several reports, Tinder is full of Fake accounts driven by humans to fool you to damage your emotional core. And yeah mock Bots (the computer-driven programs) are designed to trap you into clicking on malware-filled links and spams.
Sometimes it results into giving up your private piece of information and make you indulge in scams to pay huge amount of money in hacker’s account.
The anonyms Questions and Answer platform allows anyone to request and post anonymous question and comments to a user’s profile.
Why it’s bad: This dangerous social networking app does not offer parental controls. Ask.fm exercises the option of commenting or asking anything from anybody anonymously.
Some people tend to make an inappropriate use of its anonymity feature to ask vulgar questions and post offensive comments.
A 12-year old girl attempted suicide and killed herself, because of offensive comments she was getting through Ask.fm.
Introduced back in 2013, this app is a platform to connect and discuss threads within a 5-mile (8 km) radius. Imagine it as a digital bathroom door where anybody can scratch messages onto.
Why it’s bad: Not a day goes, when Yik Yak Messenger app is not the subject of controversy! Last year it was announced that it is flushed because of lot of explicit content, abusive language, personal attacks and rise in cyberbullying.
The app can be said as a rumor machine and a perfect wall for bullies to hide behind the screen.
The most dangerous of all, Yik Yak is still available to download from unknown sources.
Like iChat or Google Chat, Kik is also an instant messaging app which is not restricted to only texts but also allows you to send GIFs, Emojis, Photos, Videos and much more. You can also Group Chat here.
Why it’s bad: Stats says, almost 40% of teens in the US are addicted to using Kik messenger. Sometimes, it’s been pegged as dating app for its ability to meet new people. It may seem nice on the outside, but this quasi-anonymous app has great potential to attract online predators (as only a username is required to make an account on Kik) and there’s no way out to identify you.
Anyone can message you, and honestly Kik doesn’t care that much about your security.
Most popular messenger among the youngsters, LINE is actually the hub of pedophiles. You can send text, play games, share music, make video/audio calls and enjoy Hidden Chats as well.
Why it’s bad: Aside from all the features, LINE users encounter cyber-bullies on daily basis who have access to their profiles. It’s very easy for predators to find the anyone on LINE, and in case the user has allowed the persecutor for being a friend then it is needless to narrate how communication tactics like sending foul messages, dirty photos and calls can get user caught in the trap.
The meteoric rise in the usage of these Social Networking Sites, has given birth to Social media addiction. It should be kept in mind that aforementioned apps are not responsible to wrongdoings that are happening, but it depends on the user how he/she operate these apps.
Unfortunately, besides online predators the other pitfalls such as cyberbullying, adult content, personal information exposure, are on tremendous rise.
Therefore, need for The Best Parental Control Apps ascends which can help parents to filter and check what apps or websites kids can access. Also, you can limit what content they are consuming. Follow us on social media – Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.