Note to Self: Airplane Mode Equals Mo’ Money in My Bank Account and can stop Kids Rogue Internet Purchases.
“Mummy, please can I play Topsy and Tim?” I’m pretty sure I hear this phrase in my dreams.
If you have children who still love Cbeebies, then I won’t have to explain who Topsy and Tim are. I’m sure you love the programme just as much as I do (le cry). So when my three-year-old daughter wants to play the game on my phone, I pretty much want nothing to do with it.
Usually around 2 pm when I’m tired and a bit ratty from not wanting to play farm animal dominoes for the 88th time, I give in.
“Here, take the phone.” She gets to play Topsy and Tim and I get 15 minutes to drink one of those naff Cappuccinos out of a sachet and pretend like I’m in a proper coffee shop with grownups, or better yet, on my own.
This played out one-day last week. I was partaking in my usual morning routine of checking my social media and emails. In my inbox, I find an eBay receipt for £5.40. I love eBay and always buy too much, but I knew I hadn’t bought anything in the last 24 hours.
Perplexed then paranoid; I’d obviously been hacked!
Turns out I’ve apparently purchased an A4 self-portrait print of the rather fantastic artist Frida Kahlo. Except I didn’t buy this; my child did. Kids rogue internet purchases… didn’t think it would happen, but it did.
Somehow, whilst “playing” Topsy and Tim she managed to go into eBay, find a sodding Frida Kahlo print, and buy it.
Toddler Cyber Crime at its best.
I am grateful, really. This could have been MUCH worse. A friend of a friend’s seven-year-old son racked up a whopping £350 bill of ‘in-app purchases’ on the Pac-Man phone game!
The Kahlo print is actually cool and I’m deep down impressed that my girl unknowingly managed to seek out such an influential and strong female woman of history. If you have a five-minute cuppa break, she’s worth a Google at the very least.
Strong, female inspirers aside, clearly the lesson here is if you ever feel compelled to hand your phone to your potentially spend-happy toddler, then just remember AIRPLANE MODE.