Police issue warning to parents after "Momo challenge" resurfaces

Gardaí warn Longford parents to be vigilant with their children online as disturbing'Momo challenge encourages self-harm
The disturbing image associated with the Momo Challenge
Author

28 February, 2019

The Momo Challenge is a disturbing "game" that reportedly entices social media and WhatsApp users to communicate with an unknown number that sends graphic images and orders them to carry out unsafe and even suicidal acts.

Rolling Stone reported that even the Northern Ireland police eventually indicated the actual threat posed by the Momo challenge could be overblown and an effort at exploitation.

In a Facebook posting Saturday titled "Suicide game targeting our kids", the Police Service of Northern Ireland cautioned parents that the game can hide "itself within other harmless looking games played by our kids!"

In 2019, many children have their own phones so it's hard to know who or what they have access to, so it's important to monitor what apps they have downloaded and even consider having parental controls on their devices.

"We're aware of the recent press coverage about the "Momo Challenge" in Ireland but we have not received reports about it from our users", a spokesperson said.

According to the Daily Mail, several United Kingdom schools issued a warning about the game and disturbing content.

The Haslingden Primary School in Rossendale, England, also issued a warning on Facebook.

"These video clips are appearing on many social media sites and YouTube (including Kids YouTube)". "One of the videos starts innocently, like the start of a Peppa Pig episode for example, but quickly turn into an altered version with violence and offensive language".

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WHAT ALL PARENTS NEED TO KNOW: The disturbing viral "challenge" pops up on YouTube videos encouraging them to harm...

You can't always rely on parental controls to block distressing or harmful material. 'If they are unsure, encourage them to talk to you or another trusted adult'.

The figure, known as Momo, has been appearing as young children, some just toddlers, watch cartoon favourites including Paw Patrol and Peppa Pig. "Please be vigilant with your child using IT, images are very disturbing".

The sick and twisted "game" features a series of challenges that end by daring the children to take their own lives.

According to reports, it was confirmed that a 12-year-old girl died in Argentina after reportedly partaking in the challenge via Whatsapp. However, other news reports suggested that the details about the case are spurious at best. Rather, she is a sculpture made by the Japanese company Keisuke Aisawa of the Link Factory, which makes props for horror movies.

"She said she was watching one of her game videos on YouTube and she said that Momo appeared along with other characters like Slenderman".

The "Momo game" or "Momo challenge" gained worldwide recognition last summer and was initially considered a hoax, quickly becoming a widespread meme. Sexual extortion does happen ...


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