When you think about social media and text messaging apps, WhatsApp is one of the most popular names that come to your mind, and WhatsApp has been one of the most used apps for instant text messages.
Most children and teenagers are on WhatsApp, a private messaging app where they can share content with their friends and chat. So is WhatsApp safe for kids? Is it okay to share content and talk to people using this app? I have discussed all you need to know about WhatsApp in this blog.
What is WhatsApp?
WhatsApp is a free messaging app that uses the usual internet data to text other people. Anyone with a smartphone and internet access can use the app, and you can send text messages, files, pictures, videos, and more using the app.
WhatsApp is also popular for people texting and calling from different countries without paying extra charges, making it a lot easier and cheaper for international communications.
Is WhatsApp Safe for Kids?
WhatsApp is known as a very useful and cost-friendly text messaging application and is great for use by adults. However, it may not be appropriate for kids. Kids can use this app to communicate with people who may not be safe for them.
Kids can also share or receive files with inappropriate content through WhatsApp. Parents don’t give much attention to this app as it’s just a messaging app, but it is not safe for kids. You must be aware of what your kids use in the app.
What are the Dangers of WhatsApp?
WhatsApp can be dangerous and harmful to kids if not used properly. You need to monitor your children’s WhatsApp and check who they text and the type of content they share. There are many whatsapp online tracker apps that you can use to monitor your kid’s app.
1. Sending Inappropriate Contents
WhatsApp is a platform for interaction through texts. You can share media files, audio, and video using this app. Your kids may be sending or receiving sexual content through WhatsApp, and this app is as dangerous and prone to sexually exploiting content as other social platforms.
You must be aware of the files, pictures, audio, and videos your children share. WhatsApp is also an easy platform to share these types of content as it has features such as encrypted texts.
There is a lot of inappropriate content that your children may receive through this platform. They may be sexting or interacting with harmful predators. Cyberbullying is one of the major problems your children may face through the app. You must monitor the app regularly to protect your kids from dangers and inappropriate content.
2. Disappearing Messages
One of the most popular features of WhatsApp is that it has a disappearing message mode. You can enable the disappearing mode, and the texts will remain there for a while and disappear. This feature is very dangerous for kids, who may use it to talk to strangers and share inappropriate content.
The major problem is that even if you monitor the app, you won’t be able to figure out the disappearing texts that your children use to talk to people. You will not know about the type of pictures and other media files they share. They may also be sexting with other people using the disappearing mode. This is one of the major dangers of WhatsApp if kids are using it.
What do Parents need to know about WhatsApp?
WhatsApp has many features, and there are some things that you as a parent should know about it. You can use these tips to help navigate your children to use WhatsApp safely.
1. The Age Restriction
WhatsApp has its age restrictions like any other app. You need to be sixteen years of age to use the app. Formerly, the age restriction was for those below thirteen. You must provide all your detailed information to create an account in the app.
You can monitor and ensure that your children reach sixteen years of age and only use the app. Children younger than sixteen should not use this app as it is inappropriate.
2. WhatsApp has location tracking features.
Now, you can track your children’s location using WhatsApp. This feature allows parents to ensure their children are safe and secure. However, this feature may have its bad side as well. The app lets track each other’s location, and that may be dangerous if there’s a predator monitoring your children’s location.
It would be best if you made sure that your children use the app carefully because it may be inappropriate for them and dangerous.
So is WhatsApp safe for kids to use? It would be best if you made sure that your children have the people who are safe and you know them on their contact list. Your children can be on WhatsApp as long as they talk to friends and families and share appropriate content.
WhatsApp is relatively safer than other apps as it is a closed-spaced messaging app with little content fed by the internet. You can only send and receive but not scroll through the feeds where the world posts different types of content.
However, it’s totally up to you as a parent to allow your kids to use WhatsApp or not. If you will enable them to use the app, monitor them regularly and help them be safe online.