March 2018 Update: due to a viral petition circulated by the mother of a young girl who received death threats through the Sarahah app, it has been removed from the Apple App Store but is still available on Google Play for Android. Wow! Way to go, mom! If you already have the app downloaded, you can still use it. But, it’s anonymity caught up to it.
Description: At the time of this post, the Sarahah app (link to manufacturer’s site) is the #1 most popular app in the Apple iTunes app store, beating Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram. It was created in the Middle East as a way for co-workers to anonymously share feedback about each other, in a region where face-to-face confrontation is not socially acceptable. The name means “honesty” or “frankness” in Arabic and was created by Saudi Arabian developer Zain al-Abidin Tawqif.
A recent update to Snapchat, whereby users can post links to websites within Snaps caused the app’s popularity to skyrocket overnight (12 days after the Snapchat update on July 5, the app went from ranked #1500 to #1 – we’ve never seen anything link this).
Category: Social Networking
Google Play rating: Teen [side note: when this app was available in the Apple App Store it was rated 4+ (meaning, Apple thinks it’s completely risk-free)]
What do Parents Need to Know About the Sarahah App?
Anonymity = Bullies. Everywhere. It’s anonymous sharing. This has always created a breeding ground for hate and very poor teen decision making. Similar to historically risky apps like Afterschool, Whisper, and Ask.fm (the original anonymous sharing app).
Is there pornography on the app? Not that we could find – right now, it’s just text and we weren’t able to find a backdoor to Google.