Just weeks before Christmas, one mother discovered her entire month’s salary was gone just days after it was deposited into her bank account. But the money wasn't spent on presents or holiday decorations — instead, her income was drained on video game purchases made by her son.
Choosing to remain anonymous, the mother from Cork, Ireland, described her story to a local radio station, explaining that she had bought her 14-year-old son the FIFA 18 soccer video game for his PlayStation 4 console. Both were unaware that there were in-game purchases associated with it, until it was too late.
“When purchasing the game or playing it they don’t tell you that this has a cost element,” she said.
The game didn’t ask him for confirmation of purchase either, the mother claimed.
“He didn’t have to do anything or click anything to activate my card,” she said.
The mother of the boy also maintains that her son didn’t know he was spending her income.
“He never knew that when he was clicking away the money was being taken out of my account,” she said.
The two first became aware that something was up when the mother went to withdraw money from her account, only to be told that she didn’t have anything in it.
“I was just after being paid, and I didn’t understand what was wrong, so then I rang the bank,” she explained. “They said PlayStation was constantly moving money from my account. It ended up being my month’s pay.”
She also said that she contacted PlayStation directly to see if anything could be resolved. According to the mother’s accounts, however, the company cannot refund the money because it’s “an adult’s game.”
As for the boy, the mother isn’t planning to punish him — he’s already wracked with guilt over the grief he’s caused his family.
“He is so upset he is staying in bed,” she said. “... I can't even get him to school.”
Banner / Thumbnail : Ina Fassbender/Reuters