About sharing media captionTaylor not their real name was groomed on Kik at the age of 13 Dhat teen chat app has featured in more than 1, child sexual abuse cases in the last five years, the BBC has found.
Of 29 police forces that supplied information to the BBC, all but one had child exploitation cases involving Kik. Police say they are frustrated with Kik's response, with one detective saying getting information out of the firm was a "bureaucratic nightmare". Kik said it was "constantly assessing and improving its trust and safety measures".
A BBC Freedom of Information request sent to all 47 police forces in the UK revealed there had been 1, investigations by 28 forces into offences of child sexual exploitation, grooming and image offences involving the app. Eighteen forces failed to supply any information.
Founded inCanada-based Kik claims million users worldwide access its free instant messaging service. He is investigating a complex grooming case involving more than 90 profiles - some suspected offenders, others child victims - but he needs information from Kik to identify and trace them. We're banging our he against a brick wall," said PC Cullum.
Kik says it will release some information if there is an "imminent threat of death or serious physical injury to any person". In these cases, the app will release "limited basic subscriber data".
Home Secretary Sajid Javid has threatened to take action against tech companies if they do not help to tackle online child abuse. Taylor criticised Kik for not doing more to protect vulnerable users. That's what upsets me.
But PC Cullum said he was not reassured and that abused children remained at risk. He said: "In this day and age I should be able to identify everyone, but I can't.