Watch it, cowboy: Japan's 9 safety tips for "Pokemon Go"

July 22, 2016 by Satoshi Sugiyama
This image released Friday, July 22, 2016 by Japan's National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity shows a copy of a flier issued by the Japanese government to "Pokemon Go" players. Aware of the reports of "Pokemon Go"-related mishaps elsewhere, Japan's government-run National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity has issued a flier with nine public safety tips to keep overenthusiastic players from getting into trouble. The smartphone game was released in Japan on Friday. They are: 1. Protect personal information, 2. Beware of fake apps, 3. Download weather apps, 4. Beware of heatstroke, 5. Carry an extra battery, 6. Have an additional method of contact, 7. Do not enter dangerous areas, 8. Beware of people who say they want to meet, 9. Do not use smartphones while walking. (Japan's National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity via AP)

Aware of the reports of "Pokemon Go"-related mishaps elsewhere, Japan's government-run National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity has issued a flier with these nine public safety tips to keep overly enthusiastic players from getting into trouble. The smartphone game was released in Japan on Friday:

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PROTECT PERSONAL INFORMATION

The says when registering, a player should use a nickname that a third party cannot use to identify the player. It also advises against posting photos taken near one's home on , as the location could be ascertained.

BEWARE OF FAKE APPS

The government warns there are possibilities that there are apps that contain viruses, and urges users to download the game's app from legitimate distribution channels.

DOWNLOAD WEATHER APPS

"Pokemon Go" users who play outside need to be mindful of the weather. Download apps that issue severe weather warnings. A cartoon on the government flier shows a person dragging away a preoccupied player as a tsunami approaches, shouting, "Stop playing and run!"

BEWARE OF HEATSTROKE

Players of the game may go on hunting on a sunny day. In that case, the government advises players to be aware of heatstroke, taking a rest in the shade frequently and consuming drinks that contain salt. Drinking water only is not sufficient.

CARRY AN EXTRA BATTERY

Games that use GPS eat up battery life, so carry extra batteries or chargers.

HAVE AN ADDITIONAL METHOD OF CONTACT

In case your smartphone runs out of battery, carry a phone card so you can use a public phone. For kids playing alone, parents should take a head-to-toe picture of them in the clothes they are wearing, in case they go missing.

DO NOT ENTER DANGEROUS AREAS

There are reports in other countries of people getting into trouble while playing the game, including being hit by a car, falling into a pond, getting robbed and getting bitten by a snake. The government also warns players to be careful overseas—its flier features a cartoon of two pistol-wielding men in cowboy gear to emphasize the point.

BEWARE OF PEOPLE WHO SAY THEY WANT TO MEET

The government warns against meeting strangers. Bring an adult if players absolutely have to meet a person and avoid playing the game in a place where no one is around.

DO NOT USE SMARTPHONES WHILE WALKING

There are many accidents related to texting while walking. The game has a feature that a phone vibrates when a character appears near players. If it does, stop and check out the surroundings before looking at a smartphone.

Explore further: No 'Pokemon Go' yet in Japan, but government already worried

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