You may have heard of SnapChat where people can share pictures and messages with others but then the picture and message disappear. This is worrisome for parents because it creates a sense of anonymity in which children may be tempted to share inappropriate pictures and/or bullying type messages believing that it cannot be traced back to them. Of course, we know that nothing is actually lost in cyberspace (even though we feel it is).
Plus, taking bold chances like this can encourage even more risky behavior. Or imagine being on the receiving end of those bullying messages and the message disappears so you can’t show or prove it to anyone, but the pain is still there. Of course, predators know about these and use them to try and find a child who will interact with them.
Now, there’s a new app out called BurnNote according to Hillary Smith on the Anxious Toddler. In her article called Should Parents Be Worried About BurnNote, she explains that this app allows users to delete the message after it’s been read once or to set a time limit on how long the receiver has to read it before it is gone. Smith continues explaining that there are two others features specific to this app that make it even more troublesome. Users can send a message to someone not using the app and it only shows one line at a time and therefore a screenshot can’t be taken. This app was designed for the business world to send confidential information to business partners, but it’s entered the world of children now. You can read the full article here.
Smith mentions two other similar apps–SlingShot and CyberDust. As you can imagine, these are popping up all the time. I’ve been to several CyberBullying Inservices working in the school system. There are many apps and websites out there that our children have access to that are inappropriate. It’s very important to stay vigilant with your children. Check their phones, their computers, and most importantly talk to them. You have to educate them.
Stay safe cyberfriends!