Musical.ly App Used By Traffickers and Sexual Predators
Chances are your kids either use, or have asked to use the app Musical.ly.
A recent report from WGRZ warns parents that the app is popular among sex traffickers and sexual predators. According to Unbound (an anti-trafficking organization) Professional Training Coordinator Jessica Sykora, "Musical.ly is kind of the app of the moment that parents and educators are concerned about, and rightly so. It gives kids access to a lot of people who want to connect with them for exploitive purposes. As soon as we get a hold on this another pops up... we've got to teach our kids how to behave safely and appropriately online."
Musical.ly is not supposed to have the ability to video chat, but a loophole in the app can allow it to happen if you're messaged by users of both the Musical.ly and Live.ly apps, since they share a common back-end interface.
The article explains:
"Users that download both live.ly and musical.ly can then contact people who only downloaded the Musical.ly app because the apps share a friends list. It appears the ability to receive a live chat is automatically downloaded with Musical.ly even if the user didn't want it. Users can also follow other people on either app and then direct message them."