Parents warned that messaging app Kik is a 'predator's paradise'
Does your child have the app on their phone?
While we're all vigilant of our children being on the Internet, some things can pass us by.
And while we've heard about the online messenger Kik before, we didn't think it was so mainstream. However, now experts are warning that the app is a 'predator's paradise'.
The app has more than 300 million users worldwide, and according to statistics, it reaches about 40 percent of teenagers.
It is primarily targeted at a younger audience, but unlike WhatsApp and Viber, it has games featuring animated characters and emojis, which is no doubt attractive to kids.
However, what makes it a 'predator's paradise' is that it allows users to send messages directly to another person, without first approving them as a friend.
Worryingly, it has no preventative measures to stop children from interacting with strangers, and has no age restrictions either.
According to the Independent, it has been noted globally as being attractive to child sex offenders because of its easy sign-up process. Users do not need to provide a phone number, social media link, or any other form of identification before joining the app.
A spokesperson for Kik told the publication: "We take online safety very seriously, and we’re constantly assessing and improving our trust and safety measures."