Posted by Boghound on March 16, 2013
Five-year-old runs up £1,700 iPad bill in ten minutes
A five-year-old boy ran up a £1,700 bill on his parents’ iPad in just ten minutes.
Danny Kitchen had asked for the passcode for the device so that he could download a game, Zombie v Ninja, from the Apple store.
Greg and Sharon Kitchen eventually agreed and left their son alone with the tablet computer as they entertained friends at their home in Warmley, near Bristol.
But after downloading the free app Danny found his way into the game’s online store and innocently ordered dozens of costly add-ons – totalling £1,710.43.
His mother knew nothing about his spending spree until she saw a batch of emails from iTunes the following day listing what he had bought.
Her credit card company then phoned to query the payments – and Mrs Kitchen, 44, realised what had happened.
She explained: "Danny was pestering us to let him have a go on the iPad. He kept saying it was a free game so my husband put in the passcode and handed it to him.
"It worried me when he asked for the password but I had a look at the game it said it was free so I didn’t think there would be a problem.
"We had lots of visitors in the house and were both a little preoccupied. I woke up Monday morning and looked at my emails and had loads from iTunes.
"I thought it must be a mistake, so I checked my bank balance online and nothing had been taken out.
"I thought nothing of it until I my credit card advisor phoned and told me they had authorised the transaction."
Danny had bought dozens of in-game weapons and keys on the iPad 3 including 12 purchases of ’333 keys’ at £69.99 a time and seven ’333 ecstasy bombs’ at £69.99.
He also bought five lots of "9000 darts" each costing £69.99, five lots of ’4200 darts’ at £5.49 each and additional ecstasy bombs totalling £3.22.
Mrs Kitchen, a mother-of-five, said: "I realised what happened and told Danny he’d better get ready for bed and run and hide before daddy got home.
"He was crying, as the rest of the children were telling him we could have bought a house with the amount he had spent.
"He started to run and through his tears he turned back and said ‘But where can I hide?’ Bless him – that stopped me being angry but of course it’s a lot of money.
"Loads of parents in the playground said similar things had happened to them but for a lot less money. I can’t believe he was able to spend so much money.
"It was far too easy a thing for him to do and more should be done to limit stuff like this from happening. That game is very annoying – and who would spend more than £1,700 on a game?
"It’s the first time any of our kids have done anything like this – and it will be the last."
Danny said: "I said to dad can you put the passcode for the game he said no and then I said it was free so he said yes.
"The next day it cost lots of money. I was worried and I felt sad. I was crying. I’m not sure how I did it, I thought it was free."
"It was a good game, but I will never do anything like this again. I’m banned from the iPad now, but I am still going to play games when I can, but I will be careful now."
Mr and Mrs Kitchen run their own children’s entertainment company and have four older children – Rosie, six, Riley, eight, Conor, 11, and Shannon, 15.
Apple have now told the family they will refund the money.