New York authorities have put a ban on sex offenders from playing Pokemon Go in the wake of their involvement in the sexual crime, which might prompt them to target children who comprise majority of the players.
According to a Forbes survey, almost 22 percent of the users of Pokemon Go belong to the age group of nine years and above. With this, the chances of child sex abusers targeting minors while playing the game has become much easier. To make sure children in the city are not harmed in any manner, the NY government has imposed restrictions for sex offenders to use the Pokemon Go app.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Monday that anyone who is a registered sex offender on parole would not be allowed to sign up for the app. This would not only be applicable to Pokemon Go but also other Internet-enabled games. Cuomo said that they would not be allowed “downloading, accessing, or otherwise engaging in any Internet-enabled gaming activities, including Pokemon Go.”
Besides stating the foregoing, the governor also sent a letter to game developer Niantic and requested it to cooperate in implementing the plan and prevent sex offenders from signing up to the gaming app. “Software developers that operate mobile games like Pokémon GO should be entitled to the same information that is regularly shared with companies like Facebook, Apple and Microsoft,” the governor said in the letter.
The step taken by the authorities has come following a recent publication by state senators Jeffrey Klein and Diane Savino. According to the report, Pokemon Go minor players have been discovered playing in nearby areas where sex offenders stay. To ensure the children remain safe, the government has planned to implement the same.
In addition, in July, a Pokestop was found located near a rehabilitation center in California that comprised recovering sex offenders among others. The restrictions would be imposed on almost 3,000 registered sex abusers.
According to NPR, a response from Niantic is yet to come. However, spokesperson Rich Azzopardi said that the government is hopeful of Niantic joining hands and working accordingly.