Within minutes of downloading Kik, a popular messaging app, 13-year-old Alicia started getting random texts from strangers wanting to know about her sexual fantasies.

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"The problem I have with Kik in particular is the ability for strangers to reach out to strangers," said Det.-Sgt.

Paul Krawczyk of the Toronto Police Service's child exploitation unit.

Unlike many other messaging apps, Kik offers free, unlimited texting, along with games featuring animated characters and juvenile emojis which appeal to kids.

Kik also allows users to send messages directly to other users, without first approving them on a friend or contact list.

"Age is a state of mind" coaxed the man, who appeared to to be in his late 50s.

Alicia didn't reciprocate, though, because she doesn't exist.

CBC News created her online persona and profile picture to see what kind of unsolicited messages children are receiving when they use Kik, a free mobile service for sharing texts, images and videos anonymously.

While there are safety concerns with other apps, police and users say Kik is particularly popular with younger teens and children whose parents may not be as familiar with it as they are with social media sites like Facebook and Instagram.

Police say there's a lack of parental checks and controls with Kik, and some other apps, which is one of the reasons predators are drawn to them. C., was convicted for distributing child pornography and internet luring.