Apps used for bullying?

Apps used for bullying?
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Monday, October 14, 2013 - 5:27am

Do you know what Internet sites your kids are using, beyond just Facebook and Instagram? And do you know the sites and apps where your kids may be vulnerable to cyber bullying?

Unfortunately cyber bullying appears to be widespread in our country. Many parents do their best to monitor well-known sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, but parents listen up, there are some other popular sites out there where kids may become the targets of bullies.

Parents are usually the first line of defense for stopping cyber bullying and the key to prevention is knowing where to look and staying up on the online trends.

Authorities tell CNN that there are a few new sites out there you'll want to check out, because they've seen a big uptick in bullying online.

Less known apps like: Ask.fm, Kik, Snapchat and the reason why bullying seems to be growing on these apps? Because a lot of them allow anonymous posts, so the chatters can take on different online identities and Snapchat messages can vanish after a certain period time, so there's no online trail.

While many of these sites are still largely unknown to parents, they're know widely among tweens and teens, so there is little chaperoning online which is of course what has authorities so worried.

But the sites say they're doing what they can to stand up to bullies. Ask.fm says it's updating safety and privacy policies to ensure that it's "Abuse and inappropriate content reporting systems are among the most effective in the industry."

 

Meanwhile, spokesman for Kik says the safety of its users is paramount and among other things, it has developed a parents guide to provide information about "How parents can help their teens have a safe experience on the site.".

 

Snapchat says it also has safety features in place and it offers a guide for parents that includes information on how to protect their children online.http://www.kveo.com/node/add/news-story

And if you are  a parent that is not really tech-savvy, experts say, do your research also, enlist the help of other parents or friends that may be up on the latest trends and newest apps and sites that your kids may be using.

Ultimately the key is communication with your kids. Ask them what sites and apps they are using. Open a dialogue, so they know the expectations and can help identify bullying themselves.

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