Kids ring up parents’ credit card bills while playing games

Click! Click! Parents are discovering, to their surprise, that little Johnny has been racking up credit card charges while playing on mobile devices. Apple is being sued because kids can make in-app purchases that are billed to the parents iTunes account. Amazon is taking heat because the Kindle Fire charges 1-Click purchases without a password.

Of course, parents are surprised and angry when they get their credit card bill detailing purchases they didn’t even know about. While parents, Apple and Amazon point fingers at each other, most people continue to ignore the reality that it is very easy to spend, spend and spend without seeing or touching any money at all.

Money is becoming invisible. Money is a number. Parents, kids, everyone are discovering (sometimes painfully) the new reality of cashless spending. Companies make it easy to spend; that’s their job. As consumers we need to know when a click is ringing up a purchase and adding to our bill.

What is probably most infuriating to parents is that they weren’t aware that this could even happen. There’s a learning curve for parents, as well as kids.

The question for parents used to be: “Do you know where your kids are?”

Now the question is: “Do you know if your kids are spending money?”

How, as parents, do you get a grip on the reality of non-cash spending? A little background reading might help.

Where did the cash go? Understanding virtual money.

Follow me on social media: