Apps making it easier for predators to target children

Apps making it easier for predators to target children

KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV)

Parents may be familiar with apps like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, but keeping up with the endless new apps coming out every day is tough.

That means tracking your child’s activity on those apps is difficult.

One Raymore family found out about the dangers of one app when a suspicious 32-year-old man connected with her.

Jana Bichara’s 8-year-old daughter, Nora, was using the app “Like”.

Nora creates videos and send those to friends using the app and its special effects. The app also has a chat room feature. It’s how she messaged back and forth with friends, but it’s also the way the man asked her to be his friend.

“He said, ‘How old are you?’. I said ‘Why?’ And he said, ‘Do you want to meet a 32-year-old man friend?’. And, ‘I hope you say yes,'” Nora told KCTV5 News.

Nora knew what to do. She says her mom talked to her about strange people online. Nora told the man she was blocking him, and she did.

“And then I said I already have enough friends and then blocked you. And right after I said that, I blocked him,” Nora said.

Then, she told her mom.

“Thankfully she’s smart enough to know, because if she had told him where we lived. She’s going back and forth to friends’ houses in the neighborhood. He could’ve been right around the corner waiting for her,” Bichara said.

Bichara said she’d talked to her daughter at length before the incident and explained the risks of being online and the people who have bad intentions.

“We’ve talked about it a lot before,” Bichara said. “I told her multiple times, even if somebody messages you and even if they have a picture of a girl that looks like somebody close to your age that could still be somebody else behind the picture. So she was aware and knew not to talk to him.”

In addition to talking about it with your children, there are apps for parents to monitor kids app activity. 

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