Internet safety is always a big news story. The anonymity of the web has proven to be an issue when it comes to our children safely enjoying the social side of our technological world.
In a recent blog by BullGuard, they look at a specific app called Yolo, which is used as a way for users to anonymously ask questions to Snapchat users. People who receive the questions can then post them on their Snapchat Stories. This allows followers to see the responses and helps encourage the spread of the app.
They go on to say that: “…the NSPCC warns that such anonymous apps can be easily misused to send abusive messages to others or by those looking to exploit young people.
“It added that these types of apps are becoming increasingly popular among children, yet their very anonymity is a magnet for predators and bullies and those who want to send abusive of upsetting messages.
“The NSPCC is calling on the UK government to establish an independent regulator that will have the powers to make tech companies consider the risks that their services pose for children.
“The Yolo app, which is an acronym for ‘You only live once,’ was developed using Snap Kit, a piece of software provided by Snapchat that enables app developers to integrate their products with the popular social network.”
Children and social media
Last year the NSPCC surveyed 2,059 children and 2,049 parents for a young people’s social media guide. It asked children and parents about violent, bullying or adult content on social networking sites and games used by children and young people. The research revealed:
- 1 in 4 young people have been contacted over social media by an adult they didn’t know. A third of those contacted were children under 13
- Facebook, YouTube and Grand Theft Auto: San Andrea were the only sites to be ranked high risk for all three of the categories violent, bullying and adult content
- Twitter and Reddit also ranked highly for inappropriate content
- The top 15 risky platforms included lesser-known sites, such as Sarahah, Omegle and Yubo
- Two in three young people know how to perform safety functions, including reporting, blocking users, and changing privacy and location settings.
These alarming stats show that the threats for youngsters on social media are real.
It’s hard for parents to keep up to speed with everything their child does online, the sites they visit and the social platforms they use. Facebook no longer holds an appeal for them. Now they prefer the likes of Instagram and Snapchat.
The use of parental controls is a must to help parents filter what their children are exposed to. If in doubt, get in touch, and we can recommend the right product to keep your family safe online.
MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds, and surrounding villages.