Indiana mom warns other parents of video chat app that could expose kids to predators

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AVON, Ind. – An app geared toward meeting people your age may be leaving your children exposed to sexual predators and unexpected nudity.

It's called Monkey. Users video chat with random strangers claiming to be their age for 10 seconds, and if the conversation goes well, they can add time.

“Easy for pervs to have access to my kids in my home instantly, and that scared me,” said Natasha Quinn who's children began using the app.

Quinn's children held a sleepover with their relatives on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  One of their cousins came over with the Monkey app.

“When they opened it, she starts screaming, he’s in the shower, he’s in the shower," Quinn recounted, saying the stranger saw the three 12-year-old children. “Then he takes the phone, and aims it down.”

She said her children were horrified by what they saw, and came to tell her immediately.  Now, she is warning other parents.

Quinn monitors her children's devices through an app on her phone.  It allows her to set bed times for the devices, govern usage time for apps, and limit what they can download.

“Anything rated 17+ is not supposed to come through," Quinn said. “With Google Play store, this one is rated 13+, but on the Apple store its 17+.”

Quinn uses an iPhone, while her children are on Androids, so she thought the app was safe.

“It's rated ‘T’ for teen. It looks pretty cute, pretty harmless. It said it was ‘social,’ that’s all it said," Quinn told us.

FOX59 used the app for 30 minutes. One man admitted to exposing himself to users, while another person pointed a gun at themselves and us. Several children also popped up, but the kids were pretending to be 25 years old. The program sets you up to chat with people who set up profiles with the same age as the user.

The app says parents can report people they feel violate the terms of use.  They work with local and federal law enforcement to resolve situations.

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