Primary raises concerns over popular children’s game

A STRABANE primary school has raised concerns over the safety of an online game being played by local children.

Last week St Catherine’s Primary School issued a warning via social media about ‘Roblox’, an online facility that has been subject to widespread reports of indecent images and potentially dangerous communication with strangers. 

“There have been worrying reports of some indecent images and dangerous people trying to access children online via the game,” said Bridget Wilders, principal of St Catherine’s. 

“More and more incidents are being reported about this game, and there are things parents aren’t seeing. 

“Roblox has become the new big thing with children and it’s not as innocent as it would seem. Please monitor closely.”

Reports from schools across the UK detailed naked characters doing “very adult things” and warned of the game’s facility to communicate verbally and in writing with up to 200 anonymous individuals. 

Local youth worker Brian McNamee said he too has had to take measures to limit children’s access to strangers via the app.

“I’ve had to deal with this issue at the youth club last week,” he said. “I’ve found that if they don’t log into any account and play the game, there is no way they can interact with anyone else. 

“I have banned logging into it so they just play the game. 

“Also, before they start playing any game we make sure all the chats are closed. 

“We will continue to monitor this game, and if we have any suspicion of anything we will ban it.” 

With this, principal Wilders urged parents to consider the safety of other online games and applications.

“As with Roblox, any form of online gaming can be dangerous,” she said. “We are urging parents to be mindful of what their children are looking at online.”

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