Program monitors teens' smartphone activity


DETROIT – Smartphones can give teens access to the world with just a few clicks. From the internet to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, it's also just as easy for them to pull up not some not-so-friendly material.

Additionally, most things on a smartphone can be deleted with one swipe so parents can't see it. But TeenSafe is a new tool that keeps a record of everything so parents can make sure their teen is safe.

"They're children, and so much of what's coming at them they don't have the capacity to deal with. A lot of it is inappropriate, age inappropriate," said TeenSafe co-founder Ameeta Jain.

There are many options out there when it comes to protecting your child's online access. You can try limiting access to certain apps or websites, or even simply checking your child's social media pages and text messages to see who they're taking to. TeenSafe is different.

"Teen Safe is the first iPhone monitoring solution that works without modifying your child's phone," Jain said.

All the activity on your child's phone is monitored and laid out for parents on a secure website.

"With all the features that we provide, like deleted messages and Facebook, Instagram, text messaging, you have a very tech savvy solution at your fingertips," said Jain.

And it seems to be working, helping some parents find out things that their child might not have felt comfortable telling them was happening to them online.

"We had this one father who called us up and said that TeenSafe has made a huge difference in his daughter's life. They saw this dramatic shift in her behavior, withdrawn, grades slipping. He went online and he went to TeenSafe.com, he signed up, and within a few short minutes, he was able to confirm his fears which was she was being bullied. She was being cyber-bullied."

In other cases, parents can see if their teens are involved in things like sexting. Whichever way you choose to monitor your child's smartphone and online use, it's important to have a conversation with them so they understand the hidden dangers of the content they access online.

"What we want to do as parents is just be there to reinforce the morals and values that we've got at home and have them transcend into the digital world and sort of create this digital citizenship," said Jain.

Signing up for teen safe is simple. Just go to www.TeenSafe.com.

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