Some of you may have heard about the ‘suicide game’, the MOMO challenge, on the news recently. This is extremely concerning for parents and educators and it is important that we stay informed in order to keep children safe in their use of the internet.
WHAT IS THE MOMO CHALLENGE
The “Momo challenge” has recently started to appear on social media platforms as a form of cyber-chain letter. Chain letters provide a great deal of shock, or trigger anxiety, which prompts the reader to share the stories/ information or obey the tasks that the chain letters contain. Gardaí have issued a warning regarding this “suicide game”.
Within this game, there is woman that tells individuals to communicate with her via WhatsApp and other platforms. When contact is made, the woman reportedly asks individuals to perform dangerous tasks, including self-harm.
HOW CAN WE KEEP CHILDREN SAFE ONLINE – Tips for Teachers and Parents
ChatBudi: Ensure that your students/ children have a ChatBudi. This is someone over 18 years of age that a child trusts and feels comfortable talking about suspicious online activities.
Reassurance: Speak to your students/ children about online dangers and create awareness of the importance to chat about any worries or unusual behaviour that may be happening online.
Online Stranger Danger: Ensure that your students/ children only contact people online that they know in the real world.
Age Appropriateness: Ensure all internet connected devices are restricted to age suitable content.