Please see below information re the MOMO Challenge – this letter & attachment has also been posted to all parents/carers today, 27/02/19.
I wanted to share some information with you to help continue to keep our children safe. I encourage you to monitor your children’s social media as there is a dangerous social media phenomenon called the “Momo Challenge.” Please use this as an opportunity to remind your children not to accept any invitation to play from an unknown number and not to click on unidentified links.
The Momo Challenge can be found on WhatsApp (a free smartphone messaging application) and on Facebook. This is just one example of dangerous “games” on social media. This “challenge” involves a frightening avatar making contact with a child from an unknown number or name. The child is asked to perform various actions and tasks, and provide photos as proof. Some tasks have even led to suicide. At this time there is one confirmed death of a 12 year old girl in Argentina, and three deaths currently under investigation in connection with the challenge. Students as young as five years old have allegedly acted on some directions from the challenge.
One of the first clues for parents to be concerned with is the image of a Japanese statue of a woman with bulging eyes and scary features. Children are given the series of tasks to finally meet the “Momo.”
I also encourage you to remind your children to change email and social media passwords frequently and block unknown numbers inviting them to play immediately.
Whilst social media websites are blocked on school computers, the children may still be able to access such sites through their personal devices and accounts. Currently, there are no confirmed uses of this “Challenge” at the school; however, I feel it is important to share information to help build awareness and keep our children safe.
I have attached the “What Parents need to know about MOMO” guide, issued by National Online Safety, for your information.