6-year-old uses sleeping mom’s fingerprints to go on an Amazon shopping spree
When it came to getting what she wanted this holiday season, Ashlynd Howell decided to bypass Santa and go directly to the source. The tech savvy six-year-old from Arkansas used her sleeping mom’s fingerprint to unlock her iPhone and ordered $250 worth of Pokemon toys off Amazon.
Bethany Howell, Ashlynd’s mom, told the Daily Mail the shopping spree happened when she fell asleep while watching a movie with her daughter. “We laid there and two minutes into the movie I fell asleep because I was wiped out,” she said. “On this occasion, my phone was sitting on the coffee table next to the couch.” That’s when Ashlynd took a page from Spy Kids. She grabbed her mother’s thumb, and sneakily used it to unlock the phone, never waking her mom up in the process. Then she helped herself to 13 Pokemon toys, courtesy of Amazon Prime and her mother’s already entered credit card information.
When Howell checked her email the next morning and saw the charges, her first thought was that her phone had been hacked. It wasn’t until she saw the purchases were set to be delivered to her own home that she suspected her daughter may have been behind the order. Howell had allowed her daughter to use her phone previously to watch videos or play games, so she knew the little girl knew how to unlock the phone, but her mom never thought she would use it to help herself to some online shopping. “I didn’t know she knew what Amazon was,” Howell said. Cue the nodding in agreement of every mom who’s given their kid the phone passcode so they can play games. BRB, gotta go make sure my own four-year-olds don’t have a box full of Paw Patrol crap out for delivery that I know nothing about.
As it turns out, that auto-fill feature which makes those late night Baby Foot peel purchases so easy for us to complete also made it simple for young Ashlynd to enter her address and billing information. She managed to buy $250 worth of Pokemon toys through the phone, all on her own. “Yeah, mommy, I was shopping,” she told her mother.
It’s no wonder a young child would think nothing of using a phone to customize their Christmas wish list. After all, they watch us click buttons and see boxes appear at the door without ever seeing money exchange hands, so it’s easy to see how a child wouldn’t grasp the concept that she spending money as she shopped online.
Howell contacted Amazon, who allowed her to return four of the items. Then she took some of the winds out of Ashlynd’s sails by telling her that since Santa Claus knew how she bought the Pokemon toys herself, she wasn’t going to be allowed to keep them all.
As for mom, we bet she’ll be sleeping with phone in her pocket from now on.