Kids Safety Net column - Is Call of Duty Mobile safe for our kids?

In this week’s column, I would like to take a look at Call of Duty Mobile; which is a first-person shooter game which brings together the maps, weapons and characters from across the Call of Duty Series

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 11:45 am
Is Call of Duty Mobile safe for children?
Is Call of Duty Mobile safe for children?

The game, supported on Android and IOS devices, pitches users against others around the world in multiplayer and battle royale games.

The makers have given Call of Duty Mobile an official age rating of 16+ and Net Aware, our website run in partnership with O2, has given the game an overall safety rating of poor. As the game is rated as PEGI 16, it therefore has no parental controls. Plus, as there isn’t any age verification, younger children will potentially play the game, which can be very intense and violent. During gameplay you can text chat pre-defined messages, such as 'well done', 'thanks' etc. You can also turn on voice chat to communicate verbally with others within the game. Players are also able to set up private rooms in order to play with their friends, including one-to-one and text/voice chat. As the game can be very intensive, particularly in multiplayer and battle royale modes, this could give rise to inappropriate behaviour, particularly within voice chat.

If your child has shown an interest in playing the game, please do have a look at the Net Aware review which has advice to help you decide on whether the game is appropriate for them. But key to making that decision, I would say, would be to explore the game together. You can ask them why they like to use an app or play certain games, as well as who they’re talking to and what sorts of things they’re sharing. Activision, the makers of the game, provide a support page which has useful information when you are exploring.

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Call of Duty Mobile allows the ability to add friends, text chat and voice chat. For lots of children and young people kids gaming is a way they can stay connected with friends so it’s important to check in regularly with them about who they’re talking to and playing with. And remind them they can talk to you if anything upsets or worries them.

Reassure them that you won’t overreact – you’re just looking out for them. It is understandable that perhaps children may be reluctant to share their concerns with parents or loved ones for fear of being “told off” or devices taken away. So, building that confidence is crucial to help our children stay safe online. And remember you can find more information about your child’s wider online world and the most popular apps, sites and games they’re using at www.net-aware.org.uk