Here are some things to watch out for with cell phones

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Tiapet, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. Tiapet

    Tiapet Old Hand

    With recent posts on cell phones AND our recent experiences with them I wanted to put out an alert to you ladies to watch out for some of these hidden dangers you may not know of.

    First of all, there is an application called "whatsapp". It's a multi client chat/im program that the kids are using to circumvent parental controls and you can NOT monitor it with them!!! :( They can do all kinds of things with it like pictures AND videos!!! (been there done that!) You can not see or read their messages that they send or receive either. The most you "might" get is the number connected to it but that is again, only a maybe. You probably already have heard about "snapchat", you can NOT monitor that either. Another program that they can access if they can get online is "mixt" or mix it. NOT monitorable. Youtube you know about but did you know you can set controls INSIDE of youtube website ON THE PHONE to "strict" on their phone? You can but that doesn't necessarily mean they can't find ways around it. They can still sign up and still do things. Additionally they can go to, for example, yahoo and you can NOT read what they IM about or email "within" the program. You think that from the phone you can from "keylogging"on the phone but there are ways around it the kids are finding, even ones you don't think have the knowledge or ability to. We found out the hard way. A tiny window of opportunity and it was taken advantage of and in only 1 weeks time a major incident occurred in our house.

    I now have explicit pictures and video (both ways) from a guy who my middle difficult child thought was a 16yo (she cognitively doesn't process connections right to begin with so we would have never thought SHE would have been the one to circumvent all this) who looks to be more in his 20's perhaps later. He is OUT of this country too. This is an international incident just discovered last evening by chance as because A) she thought she covered all her tracks, B) she has a different phone now and this was on the "older phone" and C) I was getting the feeling she was up to know good by behaviors and the "nigeria" situation, though it turns out it's not nigeria after all.

    Scary because, as per, she STILL doesn't get stranger danger after all these years and released not only pictures of herself, our house and vehicles, but she gave out address, etc....COMPLETELY unsafe! NO MORE PHONE! Just like she was banned from internet at home and school. There was a "safe browser" which limited internet severely on the phone through a special program locked down and could ONLY be used here in the household wifi. Yet, she still got around it all. She is not even 16 yet.

    Just a strong warning to you all to learn all you can and keep learning about what kinds of applications, programs, chats, IM, etc is out there and whether they truly are monitorable or not, what you want access to for your child or not and just be vigilent in watching over them to be able to catch ASAP when something does happen!
  2. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    It's interesting, Tiapet, that you wrote from that angle. I never thought about the fact that parents can't see what their children are doing on their mobile phones. We in our family are using whatsapp as a sort of family chat-room, and it has been just amazing in keeping us all in touch with one another, real time. Even Oriel in Australia keeps in touch that way. We post pictures and even the occasional video, and we use it as a way of keeping all the family up to date with what's going on. We also used it to plan my husband's 70th birthday party, by starting another group without including him so the whole party was a surprise. Whatsapp was just amazing to use for that purpose. It's so sad that eveything has a positive side and also a negative side.

    Love, Esther
  3. justour2boys

    justour2boys Momto2Boys

    Sorry to hear that, we use WhatsApp so we can text with family internationally (US to UK).... but technology does have its downsides!!

    Sometime I wish we could go back in time to when there was one phone in the house, it was on the wall with a cord. I remember trying to talk to my friends while standing in the kitchen as my Mom made dinner.

    My oldest difficult child is 7 days into the billing cycle of his phone and he has burned thru his texting allotment, so I'm thinking of giving him back his old (not a smart phone) cell phone. Then he can try to text with 3 letters to a key! So Im beginning to think backward technology, not new technology!
  4. GabinkaP

    GabinkaP New Member

    We started our kids with an emergency cell phone, very locked down. has prepaid service with cheep phones. We bought a Razor for 29.99 and got a 4.99/month plan with just 10 minutes talk time and no free texts. We could lock down the internet to only visit certain sites. And we locked down which times of day the phone could be used. So far, so good. Hi, I'm new here. My husband and I adopted 2 kids from Poland 2 years ago. They were 8 and 9 then and came from a very difficult birthfamily. So they have issues. My son especially. He's now 10. Daughter is 11. He cannot handle anger at all. He lets it rule him and get him into more and more trouble. He gets violent and destructive. It's been hard on the rest of us. So I came here looking for some folks who've been there.

  5. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I was going to mention Kajeet as a very good cell phone for kids you really need to monitor. It has lots of different plans that you can choose from and one of the best things about it is the fact that you can gps it free from your computer. It is a completely kid cell phone. And as far as a tablet, I cannot say enough about my NABI. It is superb. Cory attempted to bypass the controls to get onto the web because I wasnt home and he couldnt do it. He had to wait till I got home and show him how to go to Mommy Mode and get to it that way.
  6. Tiapet

    Tiapet Old Hand

    I knew of Kajeet and all the other phones. We are on family plan so she was to get a phone based on that. I toyed with a plain phone. This was a decision made based on her current abilities and my abilities with programs out there to block everything. The point of the post was a warning of what kids can find and get around, even when you put things on.

    I had blocked most things as it was from her. As I said, she exploited a tiny opportunity window she had to the fullest. The phone she started out with was an old phone (passed down) while her official phone (new) came in. 1 week time frame and during it she learned how to manipulate the program as well as things that were available to her on the phone, including things that were on locked down parental controls. She had time controls as well. You name, it's on it. We are far from being "not" tech savvy in this house so to say that we didn't know what we were doing is not true at all. It truly would have been hard to get around us. It's just that kids CAN and ARE learning from each other ways to get around any kind of controls you can put on a phone and really it seems the only thing you can do, and I now KNOW for fact, is either NOT give a phone or one that can only do calls if you have to worry about a difficult child or you encounter such things. You just can't be niave in thinking that your child WON'T do it or "can't" do it as we did in this case. We did not think she had the knowledge or the ability to think about "how" to do these things.

    I guess the better way to put it is, as I've posted over time, her cognitive abilities display as if she has some MR issues. We are always questioning "does she get it or does she even care". A puzzle no one can figure out due to how she displays. She's had testing and although there shows only slight deficits in certain areas, she doesn't have MR but STILL can't do things she should be able to do (like math, telling time properly, etc). We still put all controls on anyway as we do for other difficult child irregardless. But for her to have found ways to circumvent it? We would not have suspected her to think on that level. Shocking somewhat I guess. The thought process. What she did otherwise, not so much. :(
  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I agree with you on the worry. I have no doubt that in the very near future Jamie's kids will be doing God knows what on cell phones. They have been allowed to play with them since they could hold them. When I bought Keyana's cell phone last year...guess it was more like 18 months ago now...I bought her one that was a simple bar phone with no internet. I also put it on that $2 per day plan with ATT. She didnt know how to spell so texting wasnt an issue. It did allow texting but when you cant read, you dont worry about that.

    If by any chance of the imagination I ever get her another cell phone it will be a kajeet. That is not something I am planning to do at this time considering the way things are going right now. Maybe when she is a little older and I know she is the one handling her gadgets and not her mother.
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh dear!

    At this point, difficult child is putting his ipad and cell in our bathroom each night to charge them up. He was absolutely obnoxious this weekend and I tried to suspend svc but couldn't get through to Verizon b4 bedtime, so husband just took it away. Luckily, there was no scene.

    I hear you.