The creators of Yellow play down fears that the app puts children at risk of predators, despite a warning from the NSPCC.
The makers of a controversial app, which the NSPCC fears could put children at risk of predators, have told Sky News they are developing tools “to avoid deviant behaviours”.
Yellow has been compared to the dating app Tinder, as users swipe right and left on profiles to connect with strangers.
Unlike Tinder, which has a minimum age of 18, Yellow has no age checks.
Under 18s can only speak to other under 18s on the app, but there’s no mechanism to stop adults lying about their age and pretending to be children.
It has led to concerns that Yellow, which claims to have five million users, puts children at risk of predators.
In a statement, the creators of the app played down these fears.
They told Sky News: “As a matter of fact, we are looking for the best compromise between privacy and users’ security.”
They said that Yellow is not a location-based dating application. But in their own marketing material, they call Yellow a “virtual flirting app”.
The makers of Yellow added: “We have been developing a set of tools to avoid deviant behaviours.”
Lisa McCrindle, policy manager at the NSPCC, told Sky News that the app’s focus on encouraging strangers to network “is a risk when we’re talking about children”.
She said: “We do know that those who are seeking to groom children will use this mechanism and can do it incredibly quickly to start to groom a child, until they make sexual contact, [by] making sexual requests of a child.
“Some research suggests that that can happen within 20 minutes of contact.”