Parents should watch out for certain social media apps their children use

Scrolling through social media can be more harmful than we think.

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN)- Many kids scroll through different social media apps for hours, but what they may forget is how dangerous some of those apps can be.

"Any child that has access to a cell phone or the internet would have the potential to be affected," says special agent Brent Gromer of the Division of Criminal Investigation.

Gromer says last year there were 31 cases where someone tried to meet up with a minor, resulting in charges ranging from Enticement of Minors to Obscenity Directed to Minors. Another 14 cases happened between January and June of this year. And social media apps are used in many of these crimes.

"MeetMe, KIK Messenger. That is a messaging app that is often abused, and what we see most often is SnapChat," says Gromer.

Even though the majority of the apps have an age requirement of 18, there is no way to verify that.

"Any child can just change the year of their birth to make themselves look 18, but there is no verification that is done," says Gromer.

Gromer says parents should keep a close eye on children using these apps, but the top ones they should watch out for are KIK Messenger, MeetMe, SnapChat, and Instagram, any app where messages can be sent.

"Sitting down with their child and going through the chats and the messages and build that line of communication," says Gromer.

All the apps that kids scroll through every day like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and SnapChat can be very dangerous. That's why kids should always be careful with what they put out on social media.