Children’s smartphone cameras to be blocked by new App SafeToNet

Children’s smartphone cameras to be blocked by new App in a bid to prevent ‘Sexting’ among young people

By Charis Hill

In this technology laden era there is serious concern for the safety of children and young people online, especially regarding ‘sexting’. A new app, SafeToNet, has been developed which is said to filter children’s phones for incoming inappropriate texts and lock their cameras so they are unable to send intimate pictures.

The app, SafeToNet can cleverly detect when someone receives a picture containing nudity, and will respond by censoring the image and then blocking the camera for up to 20 minutes in a bid to stop them from taking and sending indecent images.

Previous generations of young people have been sexually exploited through the sending and unsolicited sharing of indecent images sent as part of the ‘sexting’ craze.

Sexting is sending, receiving, or forwarding sexually explicit messages, photographs, or images, primarily between mobile phones. It may also include the use of a computer or any digital device.

SafeToNet will also monitors keyboards and block the camera if someone types an inappropriate message in order to stop sexting before it happens. The more attempts made to ‘sext’ the longer the camera will remain blocked. The app, which costs £4.99 per month or £50 per year, will sync a parent’s device to their children’s and if their child tries to ‘sext’ four times within a 24 hour window SafeToNet will send a message directly to their parent’s phone.

However, in order to protect a child’s privacy SafeToNet will allow a child to remove the app. “But if they do remove it their parents are automatically notified and advised on how to discuss the need with their children and in doing so explain the software does not snoop on them” says founding director of SafeToNet, Richard Pursey.

‘Sexting’ is increasing amongst young people and the surge in children being explicitly exposed continues to rise, despite it being illegal to send, possess or distribute photos of anyone under the age of 18.

SafeToNet’s artificial intelligence systems are cutting edge. The more they are used the more accurate they become. Most importantly the systems are fully automated and do not require human intervention to review content. Parents never get to see what their child sends and receives. This means that a child’s rights to data privacy are fully maintained.

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