Rebecca Judd reveals her daughter’s reaction to the Momo challenge

Rebecca Judd has revealed how the Momo challenge, a dangerous Whatsapp ‘suicide game’ that has terrified parents worldwide, has affected her children.

The mother-of-four, 36, told listeners of her KIIS FM radio show 3PM Pick-Up on Monday that she recently ‘spoke through’ the frightening online craze with her four-year-old daughter Billie.

She explained that her child was left disturbed by Momo’s bulging eyes, adding that the chilling phenomenon was being widely discussed in the playground.

Internet phenomenon: Australian TV presenter Rebecca Judd (right) has revealed she 'spoke through' the terrifying Momo challenge with her daughter Billie (left)

Internet phenomenon: Australian TV presenter Rebecca Judd (right) has revealed she 'spoke through' the terrifying Momo challenge with her daughter Billie (left)

Internet phenomenon: Australian TV presenter Rebecca Judd (right) has revealed she ‘spoke through’ the terrifying Momo challenge with her daughter Billie (left)

Addressing the Momo challenge, Rebecca told her co-host Katie ‘Monty’ Dimond: ‘One [of my children] came home from school and said, “Oh someone in my class said that Momo was in his house”. 

‘I said, “Well that’s a lie”. And she said, “No, no. He was behind the door in his house”. We spoke through it.’ 

The former model, who is married to retired Australian Rules footballer Chris Judd, added that even she was spooked by Momo.

‘She’s very freaky looking,’ Rebecca said. ‘I get the heebie-jeebies looking at her.’ 

Horrifying: Momo (pictured), which has been linked to teenage suicides, has frightened children and parents around the world

Horrifying: Momo (pictured), which has been linked to teenage suicides, has frightened children and parents around the world

Horrifying: Momo (pictured), which has been linked to teenage suicides, has frightened children and parents around the world

Then, Rebecca revealed there was ‘a particular feature’ about Momo that her little girl finds scary, before playing back audio of their conversation. 

‘Why is she scary?’ Rebecca asked her daughter in the recording. Billie nervously replied: ‘Because she’s apple… because she’s eyes…’ 

‘Because of her eyes?’ she asked. ‘Yeah,’ Billie responded.

Meanwhile, Rebecca isn’t the only celebrity to express fears over the Momo challenge, with Kim Kardashian warning other parents about the dangers last week.

In an Instagram post, the reality star also encouraged YouTube to ‘help’ by removing videos which feature Momo’s image in seemingly innocent kids’ cartoons.

It comes after fears the Momo challenge, which features a terrifying doll and has been linked to several teenage deaths around the world, had spread to the UK.

A concerned British mother said last month that her seven-year-old son confessed some of his schoolmates had told him to look up the Momo challenge.

Rebecca said there was 'a particular feature' about Momo that her daughter finds scary - the ghoulish woman's bulging eyes. Pictured: Rebecca with her eldest children, Billie and Oscar

Rebecca said there was 'a particular feature' about Momo that her daughter finds scary - the ghoulish woman's bulging eyes. Pictured: Rebecca with her eldest children, Billie and Oscar

Rebecca said there was ‘a particular feature’ about Momo that her daughter finds scary – the ghoulish woman’s bulging eyes. Pictured: Rebecca with her eldest children, Billie and Oscar

'She's very freaky looking': Rebecca, who is married to retired Australian Rules footballer Chris Judd (left), added that even she was spooked by Momo

'She's very freaky looking': Rebecca, who is married to retired Australian Rules footballer Chris Judd (left), added that even she was spooked by Momo

‘She’s very freaky looking’: Rebecca, who is married to retired Australian Rules footballer Chris Judd (left), added that even she was spooked by Momo

She said: ‘When we watched a video, the “Momo” character told him to tell everyone to fear Momo or it will kill him in his sleep. So I have one very frightened little boy and some deep concerns about the kids in his school.’

Momo apparently hit Australian shores several weeks ago, with a concerned mother saying her nine-year-old daughter confided in her that children at a school camp had been sharing the story of the ghoulish woman.

She said her daughter was told by her friends that a girl who refused to follow Momo’s instructions was found dead in a cupboard. 

Here is everything you need to know about the Momo challenge, including what it is and how you can protect your children online. 

What is the Momo challenge?

First reported as far back as August 2018, the Momo challenge was quickly described as a new ‘Blue Whale’-style suicide game.

It is targeted mainly at children and teenagers and involves the young participants contacting Momo by sending messages to an unknown number via Whatsapp.

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They are subsequently bombarded with terrifying images and messages, which reportedly range from threats and dares to encouraging self-harm and even suicide.

Police in Northern Ireland posted a message about the challenge on Facebook, recounting how one interaction in America that included an ‘ominous voice recording’ was sent to a child and instructed them to use a knife on their own throat. 

The Momo in question is a grotesque doll created by a Japanese special effects company called Link Factory. It was designed by Midori Hayashi, who has no connection at all to the sick game.

It is targeted mainly at children and teenagers and involves the young participants contacting Momo by sending messages to an unknown number via Whatsapp

It is targeted mainly at children and teenagers and involves the young participants contacting Momo by sending messages to an unknown number via Whatsapp

It is targeted mainly at children and teenagers and involves the young participants contacting Momo by sending messages to an unknown number via Whatsapp

Momo’s features include a painfully gaunt face, bulging eyes and an unnaturally thin and long smile.

The doll was originally called Mother Bird, featuring a birds’ legs and posture, and made an appearance at the Vanilla Gallery in Japan.

So far, a 12-year-old girl and a 16-year-old boy, both from Colombia, are believed to have killed themselves after taking part in the Momo challenge.

The deaths occurred in September, just 48 hours apart, in the same municipality of Barbosa, in Colombia’s North-West, and it was thought that the two knew each other.

After the police seized their phones, they said they found messages that were linked to the game.

How to keep children safe online

Northern Ireland police recommend parents take several steps to ensure children stay safe. The first is to ensure you know what your child can access online.

‘Don’t focus only on Momo, but make sure you know what your child has online access to. More important is that your child knows not to give out personal info to anyone they don’t know, that no one has the right to tell them to, or make them do anything they don’t want to,’ said police.

The second is ensuring that they know to keep their private information – such as phone number, address and even name – private and to not give it out to anyone they do not know.

The police force also recommends installing parental controls on phones. 

Scare campaign: Meanwhile, Rebecca isn't the only celebrity to express fears over the Momo challenge, with Kim Kardashian (pictured) warning other parents about the dangers last week

Scare campaign: Meanwhile, Rebecca isn't the only celebrity to express fears over the Momo challenge, with Kim Kardashian (pictured) warning other parents about the dangers last week

Scare campaign: Meanwhile, Rebecca isn’t the only celebrity to express fears over the Momo challenge, with Kim Kardashian (pictured) warning other parents about the dangers last week

HOW CAN PARENTS PROTECT THEIR CHILDREN ONLINE?

A recent study found when sharing parenting advice on social media, common topics included:

  • Getting kids to sleep (28 per cent)
  • Nutrition and eating tips (26 per cent)
  • Discipline (19 per cent)
  • Daycare/preschool (17 per cent)
  • Behaviour problems (13 per cent) 

These common topics of conversation often reveal key information about a child, including: name, age/date of birth, school name and even their appearance.

Whilst it may be very difficult to protect the privacy of children in the digital age, there are some things that can be done to shelter children from online dangers. 

Know your privacy settings

It is amazing how many parents leave on their Instagram location settings. Set your location settings to off if you do not want people to be able to figure out where you and your children live.

Only share with people who care

Ask yourself if all the people you’re sharing your photos with really want to see them and will they protect them in a way you would.

Explore private social networks

Private social networks offer a secure way to share the pictures of your children with your family and friends.

Don’t take any digital photos

Ultimately the only way to be 100 per cent sure that you don’t have a digital footprint is not to have any digital photos taken but this isn’t a road the vast majority of people want to go down.    

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