Why is ‘Mariam’ trending across Middle East?

If you want to commit suicide then play one game and we all know what that game is because it has spread all over the Arabian countries in the past few days. This game is about a girl called “Mariam”.

Saudi-produced online horror game ‘Mariam’ created by app developer Salman Al Harbi is taking the Gulf by storm. This terrible mobile game “Mariam” caused users to clamour for it to be banned in GCC countries.

Currently, the hashtag Ban_Mariam_game is trending on social media, according to the Times of Oman. The game ‘Mariam’ has also trended on Twitter over the past two days with the Arabic hashtag #لعبة_مريم (Mariam’s game).

The game was compared to being like “Blue Whale”, the challenge game which reportedly pushed hundreds to commit suicide globally.

According to Gulf News, Sharjah and Dubai police have issued warnings against the game, urging parents not to allow their children to play it.

The Times of Oman reported that Al Harbi commented by saying, “I am so happy that my game is becoming so popular. Thank you, everyone. For those sending me private messages, I love you, but my inbox blew up and I don’t have the time to reply to all of you.”

The game starts with a white haired girl standing against a dark background. The player is meant to escort the girl to her home before hiding from her father, who is suspected by users to be the skeleton figure present in the game’s thumbnail.

During the conversation with Mariam, the child informs players about trending news to demonstrate that it can read minds. At a certain point, the game asks you to wait 24 hours before you can continue.

The Times of Oman reported that, the game gathers personal information and this may result in an invasion of one’s privacy, the experts warn. The game asks the user personal questions like: Where is your home located; what’s your Facebook account and so on. These questions could be a way to penetrate into the device of the player. The game allows one to go to the next stage only when you answer these questions.

It even goes so far as to ask players political questions, including one about the Qatar crisis, Gulf News reports.

Apart from its frightening audio and visual effects, the game, which has been trending in the past few weeks, relies heavily on collecting players’ personal and private information for that extra dose of shock.

That data could be used by other parties for “phishing, theft, or extortion,” Colonel Obaid Saleh Hassan, an IT specialist at Sharjah Police, said.

A lot of people don’t even want to download this game because they think that they will have some ghost walking around their phones. May be? Something like that. For God’s sake. People can’t just download a ghost from the app store and if you really believe that, well, I have a bad news for you. You really need a therapist. Believe me, when I tell you that Mariam is not real, and of course she’s not a ghost. It’s just a good way to get into your system.

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