Police Chief

Ask the Chief

“Ask The Chief” is a weekly post allowing readers access to useful information about law enforcement issues in the city of Red Wing. This communication tool has been developed to enhance our community policing efforts by providing residents and visitors with the opportunity to ask questions about local laws, programs, and the Department in general.

Submit your question to askthe.policechief@ci.red-wing.mn.us. 





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Feb 11

February 11, 2019 - Beware of Cyberbullying

Posted on February 11, 2019 at 2:23 PM by Kate Berg

February 11, 2019

Ask the Chief

Q: Have you heard about the "Momo Challenge" and what should I do if my child is contacted?

Image of a girl leaning over a laptop with the words "Beware of Cyberbullying" and the RWPD se

Thank you for asking this question that references a current fad going around on social media. The "Momo Challenge" is another form of cyberbullying that spreads through social media apps and cell phones. The “Momo challenge” is a social media challenge where a stranger requests to be your friend on a social media app, then starts to challenge you to perform harmful or destructive acts, document the event, and post on social media. The acts gradually become more and more harmful, and in some situations have risen to the level where the child is challenged to take their life or perform an act that could result in loss of life. If the child refuses or tries to unfriend the person, the child is then threatened with serious harm. 

The "Momo Challenge" should be avoided at all times. If you receive a message tell your parents and if you are threatened or in fear of harm, report it to the police. I also suggest you block the person who sent you the message, consider not using this app any further, and change your password to this app immediately.

The Internet has a lot of positive aspects to offer, but in this instance can be a very dark and dangerous place. The worldwide reach of social media and internet apps allows predators to act anonymously with the potential of great harm. It is important to be conscious of this threat and very cautious of who you “friend” on social media.

I want to encourage all parents to take the time to talk with your child about the dangers of the Internet and be actively involved with what your child is doing online. Keep the lines of communication open and let them know that you are there for them if they have questions or concerns.

References:

1. Montana article https://billingsgazette.com/news/local/viral-internet-scare-momo-challenge-reaches-montana/article_517db18f-cc40-5d4d-a31c-e093dbb55932.html

2. Parents article www.parents.com/news/parents-warned-about-the-momo-challenge-a-dangerous-new-form-of-cyberbullying/

3. FOX news video https://youtu.be/yxRagn4i418

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