Lose Your Life Savings on Facebook

One teenager is not only broke… he tried wiping out his mother, as well. The 12-year-old UK boy racked up about $1400 USD in debt playing Farmville recently. A small portion of that came from his own savings account, while the rest was charged to his mother’s HSBC credit card. This debt was accumulated in only a short two-week time span.

Requests to both Facebook and HSBC to reinstate the funds have been denied thus far. In the popular casual Facebook game, players can spend real money to accrue virtual currency and items. With this much money invested, I would hope the kid has the best farm on the entire site. A spokeswoman for HSBC indicated that had the expenditures been on a gambling site the escalating transactions would have raised warning flags, but since the purchases were technically Facebook Credits, they didn’t warrant suspicion.

This goes back to the post from last night where we discussed a parent’s rights to check on what their child is doing online. Many of you will argue that the mother should have been more aware of what the youngun’ was doing on Facebook. I would have to agree with that sentiment. Then again, were this my child he would be doing one heck of a LOT of chores in the near future to be working that debt off.

What do you think? Who is to blame here… and should either Facebook or the credit card company have to refund the money to the parent?

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