Philly Police Dept. Offer Safety Tips for Pokemon Go Users

The app has topped the download charts since its July 6th release.

A map on the new app Pokemon Go, at the corner of Market and 19th

People have been walking around Philly this past week hunting for Pokemon on the new Pokemon Go app. The game — in case you haven’t seen the pictures on social media — requires the player to leave their house and search for Pokemon on maps that correspond with the real world. It’s fun, but reports of people ending up in dangerous situations prompted the Philadelphia Police Department to share some safety tips.

Reports have emerged of armed robbers using the app to lure people to isolated areas in Missouri. Additionally, a Wyoming woman found a dead body while hunting for Pokemon. The 35th District Philadelphia Police Department tweeted a warning about a string of robberies targeting users of the app.

NBC10 reported some tips offered by Philadelphia Police spokesperson Eric Gripp — who clearly knows a thing or two about the game. They are:

  • Tell your kids about stranger-danger. The way that the game is designed can bring people together in the real world as they search for Pokemon in common areas called gyms and Pokestops. Obviously, you never know who you could run into while playing.
  • Set limits on where your kids can go. “Don’t leave the street/neighborhood without me” can limit the amount of strangers that you or your kids could encounter.
  • Watch the road! I’ve already seen a number of people — both kids and adults — so engrossed while staring at their phones and following a map, that they’ve walked right into the street and into objects. Pay attention!
  • And as always, if you run into an individual that is seemingly up to no good — don’t hesitate to call 911!

Since the Pokemon Go app launched on July 6th, it has consistently topped the most downloaded charts on the App Store.