Blog

Tellonym – An Potentially Dangerous App Warning for Parents

Tellon

The use of Anonymity Apps are on the rise again, with Irish teens installing and using an App called Tellonym. From the outset are issuing a strong Safety Warning to parents, check younger children’s devices to see if they are using this App or, if they are receiving messages on their Social Media from their own contacts or other people using this App. It is also really important to discuss the use of this App with teens and young adults. We would strongly advise, both children and teens do not use this App.

 

Tellonym, initially launched in 2016, both as an App and a platform it is similar to Sarahah, which was known as the Honesty App. Saraha was removed due to concerns the App was being used to target and bully people. Tellonym permits it’s users to send messages to others whilst remaining anonymous. However, unlike Sarahah, upon receiving the anonymous messages you can choose to reply to the comments, which have been posted on the App.

 

This App currently boasts over 5 Million users and is available both on for Android and IOS devices. The App is being targeted at teens 16 years and older, however this is easily bypassed by selecting the Yes I am over 16 tab. Once signed in with an email address or your contact number, a user is invited to permit the App to access the devices contacts list. The App can also be linked to the users other Social Media platforms such as their Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram accounts. We would also have Privacy concerns for the Personal Data gathered by the App and its use.

 

The setup of the App is really simple and the navigation through the App is pretty basic. Once you create a profile you can search and follow other users, leave comments, or even just read comments which have been posted. The random content we viewed appeared to be interactions, which lead to the suggestion of moving to another platform and also requests to share sexualized imagery. For a parent, we suggest you install the App yourself and view the content. It will not make for pleasant reading. The App does not permit posting of images other than a profile picture, or imagery in the content feed.

 

While the developer’s web page does host advice for parents and has features such as reporting content, blocking users, reporting users, our main concern here is what people inevitably end up doing under the guise of being anonymous. While the App promotes itself as “The most honest place on the Internet”, users posting a question, then forwarded to their contacts who can answer the question anonymously, the user may not like the replies they receive. Given that children and teens afford access to themselves by accepting Friend and Follower requests from complete strangers, this enables strangers now to engage with children without even having to identify themselves.

 

We ask, why is there a need for a platform that permits a user to seek validation from others in this way? Essentially asking other people to judge and then comment on you anonymously. If people wish to post positive commentary, why would they need to hide who they are from the user the content is directed at? Parents also need to consider the amount of sexualized content on the App. The App affords anonymous access to a child, who could be groomed in to the exchange of explicit imagery or worse. There was considerable requests for the exchange of imagery on the pages we visited. An uncomfortable amount to be honest.

 

When people are afforded the ability to conceal their identity online, the comments and posts generated are generally not the most positive. This App is the perfect forum of targeting and harming young people through bullying and . Already we have been made aware of a teen who has received horrific comments on this platform. Parents need to be aware of the Apps existence. For children and teens, are we would strongly recommend against the use of this App.

Team

Cyber Safety Advice for Parents Blog

Children sharing inappropriate images can have harmful consequences !!

 

Sharing images Pixabay

 

Today we would like to discuss, how harmful it can be for children to share inappropriate images of themselves, with others when using their devices. Incredibly we have found that children in Irish Primary Schools in 5th and 6th class, are very aware of this behaviour. What some children can believe is a just a funny image or photo of themselves, can have really serious long negative effects if shared with others.

Continue reading “Children sharing inappropriate images can have harmful consequences !!”

Sexting Information Videos

 

cropped-12108121_1479029599069344_6902227259327051276_n

 

What is ?

 

 

 

This video is aimed at young children to teach them what can happen if they were to take or share an inappropriate image and how quick it can spread 

 

 

This is a series of videos aimed at teens

 

 

 

 

This series of videos are aimed at parents who discover an image of their child has been shared

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cyber Safety Advice for Parents Blog

A Kerry National School has banned 6th class students access to digital devices. All parents should now follow their lead.

 

Blennerville National School

 

This week, it was revealed that Blennerville National School, near Tralee in Co Kerry, agreed with parents in the school, that it was time to put a ban on digital device access for students. There had been a number of incidents revolving around the access and sharing of inappropriate content and ing. The ban on devices at home, is an 11-week pilot programme. What we would describe as a Digital Detox, only for the children in sixth class. This decision is similar to one we have been promoting in National Schools for some time now that children should never be given a ‘Smartphone’. We had been anxiously waiting to see a community who would come together and formulate a plan such as this in Ireland. A first step on this path has been publicly taken by a school and parents. We would hope that all parents would look with great interest upon it, and follow-up and try this themselves.

Continue reading “A Kerry National School has banned 6th class students access to digital devices. All parents should now follow their lead.”

Online Radicalisation

 

Online Radicalisation

 

There is some really harmful and very negative disturbing and upsetting content on the internet. It is a reality that due to the open nature of the internet it does give free access to anyone who wishes to post whatever content that they like online. One are of this that is causing a lot of genuine fear among the parents that we encounter is that of the possibility of their children being exposed to Radicalization material.

This content can be horrific and severely damaging to a child if they are exposed to it. A child’s natural curiosity may lead them to searching for this content. Google has reported a huge increase in the number of searches performed by the search engines for this type of content. Children may be exposed to individuals who seek to impart their beliefs and views or perhaps even attempt to convince the child to convert or join them.

By it’s very nature the internet is a 24 hour 7 days a week opportunity to radical individuals to seek to engage with teenagers who are attempting to find their own place in the world. Social media affords the opportunity for extremists to publicise their beliefs and opinions while seeking out other like-minded individuals and those who may be susceptible to their propaganda.

Online privacy

Some Advice for Parents

  • This is a new danger that previously did not exist to the extent that it currently does online. Parents need to be aware of it and what to look out for
  • You may notice a change in your child’s behaviour or interests
  • They may now display interests in areas that they did not have before
  • They may begin to distrust what they see or read and challenge it
  • They may become very secretive about who they are engaging with online
  • They may switch to a different screen when you enter the room
  • Parents need to monitor the child’s online activity
  • Always treat the child with respect and understanding
  • A child may not engage again with honesty if a parent’s first response is to argue or attack the child
  • Parents should go through the Friend and Followers see who is in contact with the child, remind the child if they do have Friends that they have only met online then they should never meet that individual in person
  • Discuss with the child what they are being exposed too Online