Parent blames Apple for 10-year-old’s $2,500 TikTok spending spree

A parent is complaining about Apple’s refusal to refund 23 successive payments to a TikTok creator made by his autistic 10-year-old daughter.

<img src=”https://macdailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/210513_apple_logo.png” alt=”A parent is complaining about Apple’s refusal to refund 23 successive payments to a TikTok creator made by his autistic 10-year-old daughter.

Apple logo” width=”660″ height=”408″ class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-245272″ />

Malcolm Owen for AppleInsider:

In a letter to the U.K.’s Telegraph, a reader identified as “AH” says they had given their 10-year-old daughter with autism and “learning difficulties” an iPhone as a Christmas present. Four days later, the child then made a considerable number of in-app purchases, buying 2,012 pounds ($2,486) in coins for TikTok.

The parent discovered the purchases only after Apple sent invoices to their inbox. The parent then went through various processes to try and get refunds for the 23 purchases, but they were refused…

Initially, TikTok said it had investigated, and said no rules had been broken, but didn’t explain what the payment was for.

When pressed further to investigate, TikTok then discovered the user, “Ohidur247,” had breached guidelines relating to fraud and scams. They were taking payments in exchange for followers.

The report then contacted Apple, who agreed to refund the parent in full, as well as reminding them of the presence of parental controls.

MacDailyNews Take: Besides the TikTok scammer, the most blameworthy person in this case is the parent who handed their 10-year-old autistic child an iPhone with purchasing capabilities activated and without Ask to Buy enabled.

With Ask to Buy, when kids want to buy or download a new item, they send a request to the family organizer. The family organizer can use their own device to approve or decline the request. For example, if a child wants to buy an app, the family organizer can see the app and decide whether to allow it.

If the family organizer approves the request and completes the purchase, the item automatically downloads to the child’s device. If the family organizer declines the request, no purchase or download will take place.

More info here.

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15 Comments

  1. If you give an iPhone to your child for babysitting purposes, don’t blame Apple when the charges for that service come due!

  2. So instead of realizing that maybe Apple should have some kind of automatic spending limit, MDN instead resorts to victim blaming?

    More and more you see things like people losing hundreds or thousands to in-app purchases because Apple refuses to add reasonable restrictions to them… how difficult would a mandatory $50 or so limit before automatically requiring the password be honestly?

    1. My daughter, not 8, has had an iPad for 2 years. I have parental controls turned on and limit he ability to buy anything, period. I don’t think it’s victim blaming to hold a parent responsible. The false cry of victim blaming is really what’s wrong with this country – people don’t want to be held accountable for their actions. Whether it’s being a responsible parent or stealing makeup from the local Walgreens – when we hold people are accountable, behavior will change.

  3. I don’t think it is blaming the victim. It is one thing to let a child wander through a shopping mall. It is another to let them wander with a bag of cash and then get upset when they spend it. Apple was generous to refund this. (That should have been in the headline.)

  4. Looking over the link MD posted for a Apple Support page, you have to have setup family sharing and if the user you add is under 13, ask to buy should be automatically activated.

    So that means, this device was either not setup as a family share device, or the parent went out of this way to deactivate it, assuming that for someone under 13 it could be? Or perhaps Family Share was on, but they added the child as someone over 18?

    Perhaps another option to limit in app purchases to so much per day and send notifications and emails when someone attempts to exceed a limit..

  5. Breaking news: the father was AppleBS. It explains why the parents were soooo clueless. Should’ve given their kid a Samsung A53, right? That would have prevented TikTok from infecting their brains, right? Right? No.

      1. Typical nonsensical BS from AppleBS – a man full of a waste of anti-Apple space. Buyer of Samsung – the best source of ApplsBS at MDN is… AppleBS.

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