In the age of social media, it’s common to hear about various ‘challenges’ that teens are involved in to prove something.
And now there is a new one out there that’s setting off some real alarm bells: The Blue Whale Challenge.
CBS 6 has more on the details on the potentially deadly game:
It’s called the “Blue Whale” challenge and the schools reported to parents that participants are assigned challenges that put their lives at risk, to be completed over a 50-day period.
The challenges start off somewhat harmless, like watching a horror movie, but quickly escalate to more risk taking ones like dangling off a roof, according to the school letters. All the challenges lead up to the final challenge, one that school counselors said encourages the person to commit suicide.
It’s unclear who is behind the challenge. But there was an app available in the Apple store and Google Play store, which has since been removed, according to Pittsburgh Action 4 News.
Major social media platforms appear to have taken notice of the challenge.
If you try and look up the Blue Whale Challenge on Instagram, this happens.
You can still look it up on Twitter, though.
The Blue Whale Challenge only appeared on the radar in the U.S. because two students told school officials in Baldwin County, Alabama about it, via WKRG:
Two students from two different Baldwin County schools notified school staff about the app prompting a warning to parents and students. “We just pushed that out as a precautionary measure,” says Sampson, “but there is nothing that has been confirmed going on our campuses.”
When the user downloads the app, it hacks their private information and the app administrators use the information to repeatedly threaten the downloader.
The app originated in Russia. There are no confirmed deaths from the app at this time, but that hasn’t stopped schools and social media networks from taking action against anything that could potentially harm someone.