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Dads Create Controversial Nude Photo Sharing App For Children

Duncan MacRae is former editor and now a contributor to TechWeekEurope. He previously edited Computer Business Review's print/digital magazines and CBR Online, as well as Arabian Computer News in the UAE.

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The app creators want to make sharing nude photos safer for young people

Two Aussie dads have developed an app which they hope will make it safer for young people to send each other pornographic images of themselves.

Shane Bell and Derek Hayes, who are dads to children aged two and 14, said they came up with the idea for the service, named HotShots, while sharing a couple of beers.


HotShots, they explained, does not allow users to screenshot photos, save or forward them. The apps servers are also wiped clean on a daily basis.

nude womanIf a user wants to send an image in the app, they select a recipient who initially receives a blurred version of the image. They can only view the clear image if they successfully answer a security question created by the sender.

The receiver briefly sees a distorted version and can only view the clear image if they answer correctly a secret question posed by the sender.

While the app has raised a few eyebrows, Bell said that sexting among young people was inevitable so it is essential to at least strive to make it safer.

He said: “It’s always something that has happened and always will happen, and if we can make it safe for people, then that’s more power to them. We think this app is something that could help solve a big issue.”

Commentators, meanwhile, said it was important to educate young people on the dangers of sexting, which is illegal in many countries when young people are involved.

Relationships counselor Amanda Lambros, a clinical fellow at Curtin University, said that HotShots appears to be safer than many image sharing apps, including Snapchat, but urged people to avoid sending sexual images of themselves to anybody altogether.

Online privacy specialist Leonie Smith also noted that the app does not prevent a recipient from saving a copy of an image using a separate device. Bell and Hayes added that they are committed to making the app even safer.

The app is available on Android, with an Apple version expected in July.

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