Parents may want to keep a closer eye on what their kids are watching online, because several videos for children are being hacked by the ‘Momo Challenge,’ which attempts to force kids to complete dangerous tasks. Here’s more to know.
The Momo Challenge has resurfaced and gone viral, and its left parents fearing for the safety of their kids. The challenge first went viral in 2018, but has now re-surfaced once again and is leaving parents in fear. This whole thing began when children were targeted on the service WhatsApp, and they were urged to contact someone named “Momo.” Momo would then convince the kids to complete certain tasks, with threats of violence or fear of their personal information being leaked if they did not comply.
However, the Momo Challenge has seemingly been taken to a new level in 2019. Now, certain children’s YouTube videos are being hacked by Momo, with the creepy creature appearing midway through the clips to threaten the kids watching. The tasks that the kids are encouraged to complete start out small, and may be something like simply urging them to watch a scary movie. But, over time, the missions become more dangerous and drastic, and the viewers are told to commit self-harm or even suicide.
The image of Momo is a girl with stringy hair and giant, bug-like eyes. Her mouth is super wide and her nose is turned up, and all-in-all — she’s terrifying. However, she wasn’t created strictly for the Momo challenge. Rather, she is a sculpture made by the Japanese company Keisuke Aisawa of the Link Factory, which makes props for horror movies. The sculpture was first seen at an Aug. 2016 gallery show in Tokyo.
Police are warning parents to monitor their children’s cell phone and social media use now that this challenge is beginning to gain traction again. Meanwhile, WhatsApp released the following statement: “WhatsAPP cares deeply about the safety of our users. It’s easy to block any phone number and we encourage users to report problematic messages to us so we can take action.”