Keeping children safe whilst online is an ongoing concern and one that is continually changing and difficult to keep up to date with.
The latest craze, which has unfortunately killed some children already across the world, is a ‘Momo’ character and ‘the Momo challenge’, a game that allegedly encourages children to perform acts of self-harm. If the children refuse to follow the orders they are then believed to receive threats such as the Momo coming into their room and killing them. The game is played over WhatsApp but children are finding out about it through You tube and Kids YouTube; the video has been seen to pop up in the middle of YouTube videos so that it can’t be avoided by adults and, despite parental controls set to the limit, these indescribable images are still visible to children. This just shows that dialogue and monitoring your child whilst on the internet is vital. For information please visit: https://parentzone.org.uk/article/three-minute-briefing-momo-challenge
The best way to protect your child is to ensure that you know what they can and are accessing online and encouraging them to talk to you if they see anything that worries or scares them. I know that you can’t ‘watch your child’s every move online’ but by having digital free zones, so kids are not online by themselves, can reduce their risk.
Please refer to the PDF document attached for more information. I have also added other PDFs on the website to give you an overview about which apps are the most popular at the moment and some safety advice when using these games.
Another terrifying matter that has arisen over the last week is that a seven year old child has managed to teach herself how to commit suicide by watching Kids YouTube and watching other videos from popular games such as Fortnite and Roblox. It was stated that the young girl didn’t feel neglected but had been told to ‘go kill herself’ when communicating with others on games that are mentioned above.
As always, please refer to the NetAware App for any safety updates on apps. This app also keeps you informed about new apps and an overview has to how the app works – some of us are not as tech savvy as the children!!
If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact myself or any staff member.
(Online Safety Lead)