Beware: Social Media Messaging Services

December 11, 2020

Report by the children’s commissioner

A new report by the children’s commissioner has found that 60% of 8-year olds and 90% of 12-year olds use some sort of social media messaging service, such as Facebook and WhatsApp, despite in the main such apps having an age restriction of at least 13. This wasn’t all news to us, as readers will know we have posted on this very topic before.

What is the problem?

This same report found that 1 in 10 talk to strangers online, 1 in 20 have shared videos or photos of themselves to these strangers, and more than a third of children said that they had received a message that made them feel uncomfortable.

Why don’t we monitor what is happening?

Herein lies the real problem of social media messaging services. End-to-end encryption is a privacy feature on all messaging services that makes it impossible for anyone except the sender and recipient to read messages sent online. This will keep happening and when something bad does happen, it will prevent police from gathering evidence needed to prosecute child abusers.

How Mind of My Own can support

We make child friendly apps that enable all children and young people to express themselves freely and safely to anyone they want to at their services. All the information is stored securely in the cloud and only identifiable by the organisation that the young person is a part of. The Service Portal makes everything transparent and is where everything the child or young person writes can be easily monitored if needed for safeguarding. Mind of My Own hopes to provide a safe and positive alternative to unregulated social media messaging services.