There is a new free third-party app for Snapchat (but not owned by Snapchat) called “Hoop” that is causing us some concern that can be downloaded on both an iPhone or Android, and here’s what the icon will look like on your child’s smartphone:
We have been following Hoop for a while now, and although it started out as a cool idea it is now starting to morph into nothing more than a hook-up app, like Tinder, but specifically designed to be integrated with Snapchat that has no parental controls. Here are some screenshots that we captured spending less than five minutes on this app:
Much like Tinder, you can scroll through the hoop profiles and if you don’t like what you see, you hit the “X” and move onto the next person. If you like what you see and want to communicate with the person further, the user taps the yellow Snapchat Ghost and you are connected directly to the person via their snapchat profile for further private communication. It is important to note that there is no chat that takes place in the Hoop App, it all takes place on Snapchat.
We have seen this app not only being used as a hook-up app, but also as a way to connect users with those who are selling their nudes on a private premium Snapchat account. I would also suggest that this app will be used to catfish, lure/groom, pre-teens and teens for the purpose of sextortion.
Often, we say that it’s not the app that makes it concerning or dangerous, but rather how teens will use the app. We believe hook-up apps should be used for 18+. So, in this case with Hoop, we believe that if found on a pre-teen or teen’s phone, it should be deleted and blocked from further upload onto their device using an App like NetSanity (iPhone) or Boomerang (Android) https://www.thewhitehatter.ca/monitoring-and-filtering-tools
The White Hatter Team