Online Alert for Parents and Guardians

Online Alert for Parents and Guardians
Posted on 02/28/2019

Please be aware that a disturbing trend has resurfaced on social media. The “Momo Challenge”  first popped up months ago nationally and internationally, and it calls for vigilance from both parents and schools.

The Momo Challenge uses a creepy avatar that is hidden in harmless looking videos on YouTube such as Peppa Pig and video games including Fortnight. The image either gives children messages directly or tells them to text a number through the Facebook owned app, WhatsApp. The app will send users instructions on challenges they need to complete or else their families will be hurt and/or cursed. Challenges range from self-harm to a directive to commit suicide. If children refuse, the avatar threatens to leak personal information, often leaves disturbing messages, and sends violent images.

Currently, there are no confirmed instances of the Momo Challenge in Fort Ann CSD. However, we feel it is important to make parents aware and make every effort to keep our children safe. Our administration and staff work closely with our technology department to teach our students good digital citizenship while they are in school. We encourage all parents to have a discussion about cyber safety at home.

Here are some additional resources. Please be aware that some of the images in these articles may be unsettling.

NewsChannel 10 story

Tips talking with children about the dangers of the Momo Challenge

New York State’s cyber safety resources for children

If you have questions or concerns about your child’s online activities, please reach out to your child’s principal and/or school counselor.

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