Kid Racks Up £1150 Xbox Live Bill, Father Blames MSFT

It's not exactly unheard of, a child racking up huge money on an account they don't foot the bill for. This time, the unfortunate father is Sam Ghera, whose son Nik spent £1150 (roughly $1790.32) on Microsoft Points over the past six months.

Nik protested that he had no idea that he was using real money on Xbox Live. After all, games like Call of Duty and FIFA all come for free, right? However, rather than kicking himself for not taking a look at his personal finances for months or being more observant about his son's gaming activities, Ghera points the finger of blame at Microsoft.

According to Ghera, Microsoft makes it too easy for his son to make purchases: "He didn't realise it was costing real money. With sites like eBay and iTunes it always asks you for a password before you make a purchase, but with Xbox Live you just press a button and then your money's gone."

He's contacted Microsoft in regards to the issue, seeking a refund, but all he's really seeking is an "apology" and "having this problem stopped so that we as parents can stop our kids from making payments on our cards."

Ghera wasn't aware the charges that his son was racking up on his card until it was overdrawn: "I went to the bank to take some money out with my credit card but the machine said I had insufficient funds. I was standing there thinking that I'd been hacked in to, but the bank came back saying they were legitimate charges." It took him six months to notice the spending after buying Xbox Live for his son to play Call of Duty.

We're not sure Microsoft will be willing to refund Ghera or even issue out an apology, as the company isn't exactly at fault. Sure, you might not expect your son to be racking up thousands of charges on your card, but this could have been prevented if Mr Ghera had kept a close eye on his credit card statements.

Catherine Cai is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Tom's Guide, Tom's Hardware, VG 24/7, RipTen, and The Game Fanatics. She has also worked as a lead producer for video game projects, a manager and lighting director for the stage, and a software engineer. Currently, she works as a Production Engineering Manager for Shopify.