The arrest of 25 men in Sarasota County, Florida for alleged efforts to have sex with children has been the major reason for a new warning from police to parents in the state, but to parents worldwide too for children targeting.
The County Sheriff’s Office in Sarasota emphasize that the men who were arrested during an operation from July 17 to July 20, 2019 responded to online apps, social media sites, and internet ads with the aim to engage in sexually explicit written and verbal talks with sheriff’s deputies who were posing as minors.
Sheriff Tom Knight explains that today, the internet enables an easy and anonymous access to children by predators hiding behind a computer screen. To this extent, he updated the list of apps that predators most commonly use to exploit children.
Last May, the list had nine apps, but has now grown to 15. Below, check out the list of apps you need to monitor if your child has them downloaded on his/her phone.
15 Apps Predators Use for Children Targeting
- MEETME- dating social app allowing users to connect with those in a geographical proximity and are further encouraged to meet in person
- Grindr- an app designed for gay people, bi, and transgender. It allows chatting, photo sharing, and meeting up on basis of phone GPS
- WhatsApp- a popular messaging app on which one can send and receive texts, voicemails, photos, as well as make calls and video chats.
- Skout-location-based dating app
- TikTok-app for making and sharing short videos and limited privacy controls
- Badoo- dating app based on location
- Snapchat- popular app for sharing videos and images that disappear after 24 hours
- Bumble- a dating app similar to Tinder, but it’s women who make first contact
- Kik –app for direct messaging
- LiveMe-an app for live streaming based on geolocation
- Whisper-an anonymous social network app that promotes sharing secrets
- Holla- an app for video chat
- Ask.fm-users can ask you anonymous questions
- Hot or Not- users rate the profile and you can chat with strangers
- Calculator%-secret apps for hiding photos, videos, and history of browsers