FBI warns popular app for teens helps child predators go undetected

An app used to find friends has become popular among teenagers and has also caught the attention of the FBI.

The app, called Yellow, allows users to chat and share pictures.

Investigators said child predators are bypassing security measures and using the app, going virtually undetected.

After downloading the app, the user must enter a birthdate.

The app won’t allow anyone under the age of 13 to create a profile, but FBI agents said child predators are posing as teens to find victims.

Yellow is marketed as an app that can be used to make new friends who are close by.

The user swipes right if they are interested in the person, and left if they're uninterested. It's similar to the dating app Tinder and has been dubbed "Tinder for teens."
"This app, as well as other apps, are definitely on our radar," said FBI Agent Kevin Kaufman.

He said even though a birthdate is required to use the app, users can easily lie, opening the door for adults to create profiles and use the app to meet teenagers.

“It looks like predators are using it to make contact with kids throughout Central Florida areas, as well as throughout the nation,” Kaufman said.

It’s a frightening thought for parents such as Ricki Whipple.

“It’s something that definitely concerns me,” he said.

FBI agents said there is a possibility inappropriate pictures and text messages can be shared on apps such as Yellow.

“If you get the opportunity, take a look at your kids’ phone and see what your kids are up to,” Kaufman said.

He said predators using apps such as Yellow have been caught in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties.

The FBI warns some teenagers might be afraid to speak up if they’re contacted by an adult because they won’t want their phones taken away.

Agents urge parents to call law enforcement officials before taking matters into their own hands.