Blog
Rahul Thadani

4 dangerous apps for teens that parents should know about

June 9, 2014
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Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

When it comes to safeguarding kids and teenagers online, many parents are already pretty clued up. They stay aware about the latest online apps that are in vogue and their risks, and many of them also get actively involved with their child’s online activities. Some parents also friend their kids on Facebook so as to keep a track of their activities.

PicMonkey Collage

However, as all parents are constantly on the lookout to see what their kids are popularly using at the moment, all kids are also constantly looking out for new apps that are bereft of the presence of parents. They want an environment that is unmonitored and unregulated. While there is nothing wrong with that, and both sides are justified in their actions, here are some apps that take things a little too far, in our opinion. These dangerous apps for teens are not risky by nature, but it is important to monitor your child’s activities on them as the potential for danger over these apps is higher than others.

Some apps your kids use that you should probably know about

Some of these apps have age restrictions that kids regularly ignore. If an online service has a minimum age requirement, you should ensure that your kids adhere to it. Also, most of these apps have safety, security and privacy settings that are usually neglected. You also need to ensure that these settings are made use of effectively. With that in mind, here are some of the apps that you need to be aware about.

Kik Messenger

kik+voxer

This is perhaps one of the most dangerous apps online for kids. It’s a messaging app that anyone can use. What is dangerous is that someone does not need a user’s phone number in order to contact them on Kik. A lot of kids also use it without proper monitoring and regulation. This makes it risky to use. The app also requires a user to be older than 17 years. However, this is a rule that is rarely followed.

Similar dangerous appsVoxer

Ask.fm

askfm+yikyak

This is an app that allows interactive questions and answers, anonymously. While the idea is neat, the app has led to several cases of cyberbullying, with some cases even leading to teen suicides. The anonymity factor leads to a lot of people being really nasty here and this is an app that requires serious parent intervention.

Similar dangerous appsYik Yak

Snapchat

snapchat

The one app that has led to the most trouble and privacy issues is Snapchat. This app allows users to send photos and videos to each other, which then disappear after being viewed. As a result, a lot of young teenagers have resorted to Snapchat for ‘sexting’. While they feel the content they have sent is going to be deleted, sometimes the receiver can usually take a screenshot or a picture of the content and spread it, unaware to the sender. Also, as the content is being sent through web servers, it is obviously being stored somewhere. This is something that users of Snapchat regularly forget so it is essential to keep an eye on activities here.

Similar dangerous appsPoke

Tumblr

tumblr+whisper

This is a popular microblogging platform but it is also a highly risky place for kids. The content that is posted here is usually unsupervised, unmonitored and it is a hotbed for unsavory content. The app is also known to contain large amounts of pornography so it is best to know what your child is up to on Tumblr.

Similar dangerous appsWhisper

While these are some of the well-known apps that have content and privacy issues for kids, there are several others as well. What’s more important is creating a healthy channel of communication with your child so that such services are not misused without your knowledge. None of these apps promote negative content, violent content, pornographic content or other risks, and most users of these apps use them productively. However, without proper supervision, these apps can be risky for kids and teenagers so some level of intervention is necessary.

Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.

Rahul Thadani
About Rahul Thadani
Rahul is a web enthusiast and blogger, and has been writing about the computer security industry for the last three years. Following the latest technology trends,...
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54 Comments

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  1. Manish Kumar SinghJune 11, 2014 at 1:46 PM

    why we r getting problem ?

    Reply
  2. Arun PhadakeJune 11, 2014 at 3:47 PM

    Thanks for warning!

    Reply
  3. prabhakar machiwalJune 11, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    why nobody take legal actions against such activities

    Reply
  4. About such activities Legaly Should must take actions on those matters

    Reply
  5. Sraban NandyJune 11, 2014 at 6:53 PM

    Thanks for warning, i hope it help everyone.

    Reply
  6. Gouri Sankar PrustyJune 11, 2014 at 6:53 PM

    Many many thanks for Quick Heal you always think about us, but take some legal actions against such type of activities.

    Reply
  7. Rakesh C SharmaJune 11, 2014 at 7:48 PM

    THANKS N PLEASE KEEP INFORMING FOR OUR KIDS SAFETY.

    Reply
  8. Rakesh C SharmaJune 11, 2014 at 7:50 PM

    AFTER ALL V ALL NEED SOMEONE TO GET US UPDATE ABT WHTS GOING ON AROUND TH WORLD

    Reply
  9. Prasanta DattaJune 11, 2014 at 9:46 PM

    Very good suggestion. Also suggest dangerous apps for adults. How to block them? How to erase porn sites altogether from computer?

    Reply
    • Hi Prasanta,

      These same apps can be pretty dangerous for adults as well. However, as adults, there is no need for supervision or intervention. With regards to porn websites, they only show up when a porn site is visited. So by not visiting a site, ads related to them and other graphic content can be avoided.

      Best regards.

      Reply
  10. then waht about we chat, whats up, line and more

    Reply
    • Hi Rajesh,

      Apps like WeChat, WhatsApp, Line and others are used for sending and receiving messages primarily. The apps mentioned in our blog post are slightly more dangerous than these.

      Regards.

      Reply
  11. Very Important information for parents. Even as a elder brother I dont have Idea whether by small bro is using such apps or not. Now i know about such app by you..
    Thanks a Lot..!

    Reply
  12. Mohsin AliJune 12, 2014 at 2:02 AM

    Thanks for this info…Surely, this info will help parents to keep a tab on their kid’s activities over phone and to safeguard them from becoming a culprit of any nuisance phone application.

    Reply
  13. Rajesh MeenaJune 12, 2014 at 4:27 AM

    Thanks

    Reply
  14. puran singhJune 12, 2014 at 5:43 AM

    good suggestion

    Reply
  15. K DASBAKSIJune 12, 2014 at 7:55 AM

    Thanks for suggestions

    Reply
  16. s t patnaikJune 12, 2014 at 8:32 AM

    a wonderful way to educate people of lesser computer knowledge, thank you

    Reply
  17. Sankar karJune 12, 2014 at 9:09 AM

    Block all the porn sites in the computer

    Reply
  18. BalabhadraJune 12, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    very good warning,thanks.

    Reply
  19. Nayan VirpariaJune 12, 2014 at 10:24 AM

    Nice Suggestion, Thanks for information.

    Reply
  20. stop these warning theses wastes my time

    Reply
  21. Thanks

    Reply
  22. santoshkumarJune 12, 2014 at 12:26 PM

    thanks

    Reply
  23. santoshkumarJune 12, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    thanks to giving such massages

    Reply
  24. Vaseem AnsariJune 12, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    Thanks Quick Heal for keeping us updated about the nefarious activities on some websites.Keep the good work going.

    Reply
  25. Kuber KarolJune 12, 2014 at 5:01 PM

    Another point that i would like to tell why Kik is not safe is due to lot of people creating fake account on this app and spreading their fake id’s through sites like omegle and all. Due to this sometimes a teen without knowing that the person he is interacting with is interacting to him through a fake id and if the teen shares some personal information with the fake id that fake id creator can later use it to blackmail the teen which can further lead to horrible consequences. So according to me Kik is one app that everyone should stay miles away from.

    Reply
  26. Joseph GeorgeJune 12, 2014 at 5:53 PM

    i understand the pros and cons of these applications and will be more curious than cautious.Thanks a lot Quick Heal@Rahul Thadani

    Reply
  27. Info Tech and apps are a great facility. Teens are not aware of consequences and being minors need supervision. some comments above talk of blocking porn sites etc. It is possible but not easy (think hardware / software firewalls and content/url filtering – too advanced for normal users).
    What most people don’t know (or realize) is that hackers and people who want to spread malware use porn sites more than anything else because (a) they are sure lots of people will visit and (b) by nature these sites tend to be unregulated and easy to exploit.
    Visiting a porn site is a SURE way of absorbing all kinds of malware (viruses, spyware, trackers, identity theft etc).
    Most people still don’t have anti virus software on smart phones that they are also using for email and financial transactions. It is like making copies of keys to your locker and distributing them to the public.
    So, avoid porn sites like the plague not for moral reasons alone . . . You are in serious danger if you lose your online credentials to an anonymous hacker and get all your money cleaned out of the bank. Very possible!
    Cheers

    Reply
  28. Yashwant PatilJune 12, 2014 at 8:46 PM

    Thanks for warning, i hope it help everyone,& Block all the porn sites in the computer

    Reply
  29. I had seen a movie ‘Enemy of the States’ whose plot was set around passing new legislation that dramatically expands the surveillance powers of intelligence agencies.
    What could be the negative consequences when these apps take all the permissions before downloading? One of my friends was shocked when one portal announced which sites my friend has visited in his professional information.
    Who can stop this?
    Is there any forum/NGO which is working on such issues?
    Can someone file Public Interest Litigation against these controls on personal lives of Indians?
    Is it happening in other countries also?
    How specifically Quick Heal can actively help its users to safeguard their privacy?

    Reply
    • Hi Bipin,

      To answer your many questions:

      1. Usually, the permissions that apps demand before installation are those that are needed by the apps to perform the tasks they are built to do. If someone is uncomfortable with the permissions required, they can simply choose to not install such apps. The problem arises when apps require permissions that have nothing to do with their functionality. For instance, if a photo editing app wants access to your contacts list.

      2. The Cyber Crime Investigation Cell looks into such matters in India. You can refer to their site for more information. However, if you find that an app is suspicious, you can also report it on Google Play and they will look into the matter.

      3. Yes, these apps demand the same information in other countries as well.

      4. Quick Heal helps against such threats with an integrated security solution for Android smartphones. You can install this app for free or you can even purchase the premium version from Google Play. Every app is scrutinized by Quick Heal before installation and you can also view all the permissions that all your apps are using through a centralized hub via this security suite. In this manner, you can monitor and regulate all your applications successfully.

      Hopefully I managed to answer all your questions. Thank you for your feedback.

      Best regards.

      Reply
  30. dipanjan sahaJune 13, 2014 at 12:39 AM

    Are app like whats up , wechat fully safe to use ???

    Reply
  31. dipanjan sahaJune 13, 2014 at 12:43 AM

    Do Quick Heal mobile security have a feature to block websites ??

    Reply
  32. R u trying to say that whatsapp. We chat line these are also dangerous apps to use it???and how it harms us if we use it.

    Reply
    • Hi Sam,

      These apps that you have mentioned are used purely for exchanging messages and they also have some privacy and security features built in. With that in mind, they are different from and not as dangerous as the apps that we have mentioned in the blog post.

      Regards.

      Reply
  33. Vikas kumarJune 13, 2014 at 1:18 AM

    Thanks

    Reply
  34. Abhishek yadavJune 13, 2014 at 10:15 AM

    its helpful

    Reply
  35. bt why these aaps are dangerous nd i use ask fm

    Reply
    • Hi Shubham,

      These apps are not dangerous as such, but their nature allows predators and malicious parties to exploit innocent and unsuspecting victims. Especially, small children who do not fully comprehend the meaning of cyber security and privacy. Every app can be used in a dubious manner for harmful purposes in several innovative ways.

      Regards.

      Reply
  36. Suman C RoyJune 13, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    Basically the present society is going more ane and more dependent on various virtually social network which are basically contains no social ethics, values & principle as he/she(kid/teen/adult/old) is squezing him/herself from the other and turing alone.And most of these sites can be misused or abused. Therefore my advice will be “ignore all the socalled social network where there is no extreme emergency or necessary at all, mingle yourself directly in open space where possible in daylight if anything goes wrong, you will find a fellow to alert you,lessen dependence on machine be homosaphiens”

    Reply
  37. Vishal BhatiJune 14, 2014 at 8:45 AM

    Thanks.

    Reply
  38. dipanjan sahaJune 14, 2014 at 6:59 PM

    Now i have the quick heal total security
    I have blocked some websites but it’s still opening with uc browser
    What to do ??

    Reply
    • Hello Dipanjan Saha,

      For instance, if you wish to block Facebook, then proceed with the steps below:

      1. Open Quick Heal dashboard
      2. Click Parental Control
      3. Select the user as applicable
      4. Check the option ‘Restrict access to particular website’
      5. Click ‘Block List’
      6. Click ‘Add’
      7. Type Facebook.com
      8. Click OK, then Save Changes

      If you still face any issue, please get in touch with our support at 0-927-22-33-000.
      You can also raise a query at http://www.quickheal.com/submitticket.asp. Our support team will get back to you to resolve the issue you are facing.

      Regards,

      Reply
  39. Please read.

    Reply