Parents do everything they can to keep their children safe, but the Internet has given predators a platform that is not as easy to monitor. One Illinois dad made a disturbing discovery when he saw the messages that were being sent to his 7-year-old daughter through a popular app. After taking matters into his own hands, he decided to share his story on Facebook to warn other families.
Brad Summer would often lend his daughter Madi his phone so she could play on the app Musical.ly, an entertainment social network for creating, sharing, and discovering short videos. Summer states that Madi had connected with her cousins on the app and would use it to send each other goofy singing videos. However, one of Madi’s connections was not who they said they were.
A predator named “Jessy” managed to make Madi believe she was communicating with a 9-year-old. The conversation started off innocently enough until Jessy began requesting selfies from Madi. At first, she complied with the requests, but the demands quickly began to show the predator’s true intentions.
Jessy began asking Madi to send them pictures of herself without a t-shirt on. Madi refused to send the pictures and seemingly abandoned the conversation, but that didn’t stop the predator from continuing to badger her for photos. Eventually, Madi’s father saw the conversation and gave his own response to the predator.
Brad Summer was quick to inform “Jessy” that he’s a police officer and that he documented the predator’s IP address and location. The furious father then took to Facebook to warn other parents, writing, “First I want to say how proud of our daughter I am and want this to be a warning to your families […] Please, tell your kids to let you know if anyone ever asks something like this, let them know it’s okay to tell you. It has helped us in this situation.”
Summer made another post to update those following the story that a detective has submitted a subpoena to Musical.ly to freeze all records pertaining to the person posing as Jessy. However, Summer isn’t stopping there. Despite the fact that Summer’s post has been shared over 85,000 times, the father is looking to make sure Musical.ly does more to protect young users.
“I reached out to a lawyer, as I feel [Musical.ly] are wrongfully targeting kids,” Summer wrote on his second Facebook post. “I’m not seeking monetary damages, but I want change. Safety, from a company that knowingly has an issue […] Please don’t give up on this fight with me, I need you all by my side!”
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