El Paisano

“Bark” an App That Sees All Your Kid’s Texts

Bark allows parents to monitor any dangers such as bullying.

Photo Illustration/ Erika Suarez

Photo Illustration/ Erika Suarez

Most children from ages 15 and above have some type of social media application that allows them to interact with people from around the world. Parents unaware that these connections can lead to bullying, talking to predators, and other dangers.

An app called Bark claims it has saved more than a billion messages from 2 million children.

The application monitors children’s devices to prevent any dangers that can occur. This includes issues such as suicides, shootings, and other dangerous situations.

Bark charges parents 9 dollars a month to connect them to their kid’s smartphones. It surveys their text messages, emails, and social media activity. This includes photos and videos and the app is also compatible with up to 24 different platforms. The app sends alerts if it detects their child using profanity, sexting, being bullied, or showing signs of depression.

Jasmina Byrne, a child protection specialist at UNICEF and expert in children’s privacy rights in the digital age stated: “ Obviously there are privacy concerns when it comes to installing these kinds of applications on children’s phones, especially if they don’t know about it.” Many parents have begun to download the app without their children’s knowledge, despite these concerns.

Parents believe they can spy on their child and have full access to their kid’s social media accounts. In contrast, Chief marketing officer Titania Jordan said, “ We really only want to alert parents when there’s a problem or issue that they need to know about”. Parents can help their children solve problems, but risk their child finding out they’re being spied on. And that breaks the trust.

Bark is one of many applications to monitor a teen’s social media activities.

Most parents keep the app a secret, to keep their children honest. A parent from Charlotte, North Carolina who used Bark stated, “ This is so you don’t have to give me your phone and let me go through your texts”. He decided to download the application to monitor threats towards his children.

Every parent wants to protect their children from any dangers they can encounter through the internet.  This application can be very useful for parents to help their children be safe and feel protected at all times.

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“Bark” an App That Sees All Your Kid’s Texts