A Tinder-like app for teenagers is putting young people at risk of predators by having no checks on users’ age, the NSPCC has warned.
The Yellow app claims to have five million users and is the second most popular free lifestyle app after Tinder on the Apple app store in the UK.
Like Tinder, users can connect with strangers by swiping right on their profile picture. When both users mutually ‘like’ each other they can chat by adding each other on picture-messaging service Snapchat.
But unlike dating app Tinder – which raised its minimum age to 18 this summer after charities said paedophiles could use it to groom children – Yellow does not have checks in place to verify ages.
Snapchat is popular amongst teenagers and has a reputation for being used to send sexual content. But there are systems in place which means it is not easy for users to find strangers.
Yellow, which is owned by a different company, does allow users to add strangers on Snapchat.
A spokesman for the NSPCC said: “Any app that allows strangers to send photos to children or vice versa is troubling – particularly where the images being exchanged are of a sexual nature. And Yellow’s settings that enable adults to view children, through a service blatantly aimed at flirting and relationships, also creates an opportunity for sexual predators to target young people. This needs to be urgently addressed.
“We want age verification measures in the Digital Economy Bill that will stop under-18s accessing porn websites to be extended to cover social networking platforms. This would mean adults would not be able to pose as children or vice versa, and any operator that failed to comply could face fines or be blocked from operating in the UK.
“We would urge parents to have a conversation with their children so that they know how to stay safe online.”
Further information can be found on the NSPCC website about Online Safety
Also Securethoughts.com has an in-depth article which is well worth reading;
Added 7th December 2016
updated 24th May 2017