28 February 2019 (by admin)
Heard about Momo?
It’s likely that you will have heard about and have questions or concerns regarding the ‘Momo’ challenge that has hit the media this week.
What is it?
Similar to the ‘Blue Whale’ challenge, the ‘Momo’ challenge is targeting younger children through online content and even through hacked games such as minecraft.
Many children enjoy watching YouTube videos and are being frightened by the threatening character that takes viewers by surprise by appearing mid-way through popular clips such as Peppa Pig.
The frightening character encourages children to get in contact with them via WhatsApp and other social media. Consequences of not complying are threatening and ‘players’ who do get in touch are hounded with violent images and dares, encouraged to harm themselves and ultimately take their own lives.
Some believe that hackers are behind it and it’s a means to get data. Whatever or whoever are behind it, there is an enormous safeguarding risk to children and the most vulnerable.
How to help
Filtering. Check that all of the settings have been set at maximum security.
Supervision. Be aware of screens being changed quickly upon your approach.
Awareness. It’s an opportunity to talk to children about what they watch online and what to do if they see something that upsets them or makes them feel uncomfortable.
Adults concerned about a child or requiring advice on how to approach the subject with children are advised to visit the NSPCC website, www.nspcc.org.uk or telephone 0808 800 5000.