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  3. Online Safety App Alert

Online Safety App Alert

20 February 2021 (by K Stephens (kstephens))

Content from Omegle is now being shared by popular influencers which could encourage young people to visit this platform. We’re aware of instances where popular influencers are livestreaming reaction videos of them using the platform.

Following recurring press reports, and concerns from parents and safeguarding professionals, we’re again pushing this alert out to parents. 

Content from Omegle is now being shared by popular influencers which could encourage young people to visit this platform. We’re aware of instances where popular influencers are livestreaming reaction videos of them using the platform.

What are anonymous chat rooms?

Anonymous chat rooms are online spaces where people can chat with strangers. People can communicate via instant messaging and video chat, some of these platforms use random matching to pair users.

Young people are likely to use these chat rooms and chat room apps because they seem fun, and the randomisation of people can be exciting.

As young people spend much more time online due to ongoing restrictions, there is an increased chance that they will come across these sites.

We’re aware of content from Omegle being shared widely across other platforms with trending hashtags, which could drive even more traffic. Despite young people seeing platforms like these as fun, they may not see the risks from those online with malicious intentions. 

The risks are:-

Young people are at risk of seeing distressing or highly sexualised imagery without warning

They may be asked or pressured to remove clothing or reveal personal information

They may be asked to have private conversations on other apps or platforms

They may be sent malicious links or spam

 

Top tips:-

Keep on engaging young people in a conversation about keeping safe online and who they would talk to if someone made them feel uncomfortable

When talking to a child or young person it is best not to mention the website or app by name as it may increase the risk of them checking out the platform

Submit an online report to CEOP