TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) The Better Business Bureau is urging parents to keep their children safe, when they head online to play video games.
(Source: Better Business Bureau)
While parents used to be able to expect their child to have to play video games in the house on something like a game console or desktop computer, today, that can take place anyway. In fact, children are now able to access a million games through app store access on a smartphone or tablet, according to the BBB.
While many of the games people may see younger child playing today, may appear harmless, parents often times don't know whats going on inside those games.
"A lot of parents don't know what's going on within the the game," said Jeremy Johnson, the eastern Idaho marketplace manager for the Better Business Bureau - Pacific Northwest region.
The bureau warns of many online games in app stores offering game-specific currency to players. And that even if parents don't have their credit card attached to a specific game or account their child uses, they should still be concerned over what's being sought after. Such as private or personal information.
"Kids are being approached for free game currency. And that is to lure them to different things," Johnson said. "You know different sites, and for them to give up information such as maybe their username, their password and email address."
Overall Johnson recommends parents ask the tough questions of their children to keep them safe when online gaming.
"As a parent you want to ask your kids what goes on in the game? Is there... are you chatting with other people? And if you are, what are they saying to you? You know, and talk to them about and in this game can you buy things?," she said. "In a lot of the games now there's online chat features. And a lot of those chat features aren't really regulated as far as who's allowed to chat and who's not."
This year marks the 16th annual National Cybersecurity Awareness Month Campaign, which takes place every October. During this month, the Better Business Bureau is helping inform consumers and business of how they can best stay safe and vigilant.