PNP warns against potentially deadly 'Momo Challenge'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 28) —The Philippine National Police has appealed to parents and guardians to closely monitor their children's internet use.

PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde issued the warning amid reports of a so-called "Momo Challenge" spreading online. The game played on messaging app WhatsApp, Facebook, and YouTube allegedly encourages children and teenagers to do specific tasks, with challenges starting small like waking up in the middle of the night. It then progresses to more dangerous and violent challenges, such as self-harm and suicide.

"Sa ating mga magulang kailangan po siguro bantayan natin ang ating mga anak. Siguro ang kailangan dito is yung talagang magabayan ang mga anak lalo na kapag sila ay wala sa atin, nandun sa mga schools. Isa na rin ito na isama nila yung tamang pagturo para maiwasan itong mga suicidal thinking ng ating mga kabataan or etong mga challenges na ginagawa through the internet," he said in a chance interview on Wednesday.

The police chief added that those encouraging self-harm can be held criminally liable.

"Remember, this is a crime lalung-lalo na kung ang bata ang ini-enganyo," Albayalde said.

The National Bureau of Investigation said they have not receive any suicide reports directly linked to the dangerous challenge.

YouTube also said it hasn't seen any recent evidence of videos promoting the 'Momo Challenge" on YouTube.