3. Hoop: Dating App That Allows Minors? A Big NO!
It’s never a good idea to let minor-aged teenagers use dating apps, and if that app allows both adults and minors to join, that’s a double red flag.
That’s exactly what Hoop is, although in this case, it’s advertising itself as a social media app where users can make new friends. That’s why it’s rated safe for teenagers on the Google Play Store and 12+ on the Apple App Store.
The truth, however, is that Hoop is a dating app camouflaging as a social app. It’s like Tinder meets Snapchat. Users can scroll through profiles of other Hoop users, and if they find one they want to interact with, a simple press of a button connects them through Snapchat.
You can see how that’s dangerous for our teenagers, right? Even if they don’t actively seek friends through Hoop, other users can see their profiles and try to connect with them. Side note: Letting them put their personal information (name, age, birthday, etc.) on social apps can increase your child’s chances of falling victim to identity theft. (Read our identity theft guide for more information.)
It’s also very easy to create a fake profile, so even if your teenager reasons that they would only connect with same-aged users, it’s still very possible for them to meet online predators.
Just err on the safe side and make Hoop off-limits, at least until they are old enough to pick who to date because, as mentioned, Hoop is a dating app.