Armed Robbers Use Pokémon Go Mobile Game To Lure Victims
Armed Robbers used the wildly popular news mobile game Pokémon Go to lure victims into a trap at the weekend, according to police reports.
Police in Missouri in the U.S responded to a report of an armed robbery at around 2am on Sunday and arrested four suspects.
“It is believed these suspects targeted their victims through the Pokemon Go smart phone application,” said O’Fallon Missouri Police Department in a statement on Facebook.
Made by developer Niantic Labs for Nintendo, Pokémon Go is an augmented reality smartphone game that involves capturing virtual Pokémon in real world locations.
So far the iOS and Android game has only been officially released in Australia, New Zealand and the U.S, with a UK version ‘coming soon’.
There are workarounds for UK users to download the app prior to the official launch using other means, but these run the risk of accidentally downloading malware.
According to the O’Fallon PD, the criminals were able to lure their victims using the game’s location-based features.
“Many of you have asked how the app was used to rob victims, the way we believe it was used is you can add a beacon to a pokestop to lure more players. Apparently they were using the app to locate ppl standing around in the middle of a parking lot or whatever other location they were in,” they explained.
Since its launch the game, which encourages people to go outside to hunt down the virtual Pokémon, has proved incredibly popular, though the makers have warned players to be aware of their surroundings.
On Friday, a teen in Wyoming discovered a dead body in a river while out playing the new game.
Image credit: Niantic Labs/Nintendo