We have received a message via Barnardo’s from Chief Inspector Alan Rhees-Cooper, the NPCC Lead for Missing People, warning parents/carers about the dangers of children accessing the Blue Whale and MOMO social networking sites and reports in the Clacton area that the Blue Whale challenge has resurfaced on Instagram.
- Blue Whale is a social network phenomenon dating from 2016 that exists in several countries. It is a “game” reportedly consisting of a series of tasks assigned to players by administrators over a 50-day period, initially innocuous before introducing elements of self-harm and the final challenge requiring the player to commit suicide.
- MOMO targets young children by encouraging them to text a number on WhatsApp, which then sends them instructions to complete a series of increasingly bizarre and dangerous tasks from watching a horror movie to engaging in self-harm to taking their own lives.
The Samaritans have recently seen several reports and Internet Matters have seen posts from a school in Clacton. The UK Safer Internet Centre Helpline also had one case reported last week by a school reporting that the Blue Whale challenge had resurfaced on Instagram.
Please make sure you monitor your child(ren)’s on-line activities closely, especially throughout the summer holiday period.
Follow this link which offers advice and information about the dangers of children communicating with strangers on-line: https://esafetytraining.org/ (The 2 Johns)