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December 15, 2019

Phone App Safety Guide

phone app safety for minors

In a lot of ways, technology has made being a parent easier than ever before. Location tracking lets you know where your children are at all times, and they’re always just a phone call away in an emergency. The apps they use allow them to express themselves and have fun. But all this has come with some serious dark sides, which can put your children at risk. The net can be a dangerous place, and when it comes to keeping your kids safe, knowing what’s out there is the best strategy.

So while the apps your children use may have many positive aspects, it’s important to be aware of potential threats like bullying, adult content, and even sexual predators. With so many new apps being released each month, though, it may seem impossible to really stay informed. That’s why we made this helpful guide so that you can decide what apps your children should and shouldn’t use to keep them safe in cyberspace.


This app can be used very positively, to showcase interests and accomplishments. Regularly monitor who they follow to make sure the images they are seeing are safe and age appropriate.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Monitor who they follow!


The filters and features of Snapchat make it a lot of fun for even very young users. Make sure they only use it under your supervision, though, as the stories can contain inappropriate material.

  • Safety Rating: ★★☆☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Be careful of adult language!


Twitter is great for posting opinions or even telling funny jokes. Watch out for who they follow, though, as some users may use adult language. Cyberbullying is also known to occur on Twitter.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Be careful of adult language!


Their privacy settings can keep unwanted strangers from viewing children’s personal information. Make sure your kids are only friends with people they know in real life, and teach them to keep their privacy settings tight.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★★☆
  • Key Takeaway: Regularly check privacy settings!

Facebook Messenger:

Since every Facebook profile is tied to someone’s real identity, this messenger prevents anonymous harassment. Teach kids not to accept from outside their friends list and to only friend people they know.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★★☆
  • Key Takeaway: Monitor the friends list!


There are so many amazing videos to watch here, and your child can even make some of their own to upload. However, not all of the content on YouTube is child appropriate, though, so make sure to monitor their usage. YouTube Kids is a great alternative if you don’t want to give them full rein of all the content available on YouTube!

  • Safety Rating: ★★★★☆
  • Key Takeaway: Be careful of adult content!


Kik allows you to chat with anyone on the app, even if they are not in your contact list. This should be avoided entirely, since there is no way to know for sure who your child will chat with, and it can be easily used by predators in disguise.

  • Safety Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Just say no!


Tumblr can be a fun place to easily run a blog of images and ideas. While their terms of service allows inappropriate material, this platform also uses hashtags to monitor hashtags relating to depression, self-harm, and bullying, and provide resources to help users.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Not for young children


This helps you to find and save fun ideas, like craft projects. It’s mostly innocent, but does feature some adult content, so make sure to monitor your child’s use.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★★★
  • Key Takeaway: Monitor usage!


Their slogan is, “Talk to Strangers!” This alone should make it obvious that this app is no good for your kids.

  • Safety Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Not even once!


This app is totally anonymous while sharing a user’s location, making it an easy hunting ground for predators. It’s also an 18+ app — although verifying that can be tricky. Best to avoid it entirely.

  • Safety Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Stay away!


Letting people ask your child anonymous questions is just asking for cyber bullies to get involved. Best to avoid this app entirely

  • Safety Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Don’t even ask!


It can be fun to make and participate in little polls with Wishbone. However, many polls are not child appropriate, and since there’s no way to filter them, only allow this app under strict supervision.

  • Safety Rating: ★★★☆☆
  • Key Takeaway: Use at your own risk!

Categories: Digital Safety, Tweens/Teen Safety

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