Chennai/Madurai: After the Blue Whale game claimed the life of a youngster in Madurai District, the Tamil Nadu police on Tuesday released an advisory to sensitise the parents and children about the perilous game.
The game is available under different names such as 'A Silent House', 'A Sea of Whales' and 'Wake Me Up at 4:20 AM' and it is mostly played using smart phones or similar devices, said the police officials.
Based on available information it is clear that the children in the age group of 12-19 years are the most vulnerable group over the internet to be most prone to Blue Whale Challenge and similar games, the advisory stated.
The game can be easily downloaded from websites or official play stores, but involves performing activities assigned by the administrator/curator of a closed group social media forum - that includes online gaming groups, message boards and other online community messaging areas - to the targeted people and would deliberately induce vulnerable teenagers to take up series of tasks over a period of 50 days and to commit suicide at the end.
Police step up campaign against online game
Stepping up their campaign to create awareness on the 'Blue Whale Challenge' game, the police started meeting students directly in educational institutions on Tuesday.
Speaking at Lady Doak College, Additional Superintendent of Police (crime against women) C Kalavathy asked student to approach police at any time if they were unable to share their problems, either with their parents or teachers. Stating that the Blue Whale game is being shared by a secret group, she also urged students not to share their private information on social media and on the internet.
As highly educated hackers are part of this secret group, they intimidate and threaten those who play the game of leaking their personal information.
"Suppose you or your friends reach the final stage in the Blue Whale game and are being threatened by hackers to complete the final task - to commit suicide - please dial 100, the police emergency number. We will rescue you from such a distressing situation," said Kalavathy.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the event, Kalavathy said that so far they had counselled a school student who was rescued by his parents when he attempted to commit suicide. "We doubt that his suicide attempt was induced by the Blue Whale game because the 12-year-old boy doesn't have a mobile phone," said the officer.
During counselling, the student claimed that he had learned about the game from his classmates when they gathered in the ground for playing after school hours, she said. He admitted that he was depressed due to family circumstances as his family was not paying attention to him....