More Children Cheated in Game Scams; Counsellors Urge Peer Support and Parental Supervision

More Children Cheated in Game Scams; Counsellors Urge Peer Support and Parental Supervision

The Straits Times
Republished with Permission
6 March 2022

Mr Chong Ee Jay, a cyber-wellness expert at Focus on the Family Singapore, said that he saw 12 such cases in 2021, up from seven in 2020.

These children were counselling clients or had sought help with Mr Chong after workshops he conducted at schools.

In the first variant, children are promised rare items by other players who befriend them, said Mr Chong.

An 11-year-old boy he counselled lost about $500 worth of virtual items in Roblox after he was misled by another player into giving him his gaming account password.

The scammer had lied to the boy that he needed his log-in details to transfer a virtual sword, supposedly a rare item, to him.

Noting how children often feel the need to be accepted by their peers, Mr Chong said: "My client perceived that this gamer, who he saw as an older brother, could be trusted because he was always very helpful in the game and gave him advice on how to level up."

Mr Chong said it is important for parents not to blame their children but instead help them and let them know they are tackling the incident as a family.

"They know they have made a mistake, but if they feel they are being labelled by their parents as one, it becomes more than just feelings of shame or guilt, but also affects their identity."

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