Pokemon Go ban: Registered sex offenders not allowed to play, state says

Under the direction of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, registered sex offenders in New York are no longer allowed to play the popular app Pokemon Go.

According to the New York State Office of Public Safety, the governor has barred all registered sex offenders under the state’s supervision from downloading, accessing or playing Pokemon Go.

The Department of Criminal Justice is now tasked with providing the app’s maker, Niantic, with the most up-to-date list of registered sex offenders in the state, the public safety office said in a post on its Facebook page.

The move, according to the agency, was made with the “hopes the company will use the list to prevent sex offenders from using the app.”

“Protecting New York’s children is priority number one and, as technology evolves, we must ensure these advances don’t become new avenues for dangerous predators to prey on new victims,” Cuomo said in a statement in the Facebook post on Monday, Aug. 1, 2016. “These actions will provide safeguards for the players of these augmented reality games and help take one more tool away from those seeking to do harm to our children.”

Cuomo’s action immediately hits more than 3,000 sex offenders now on parole and classified among the top three classes of offenders. For sex offenders on probation, the state is advising county probation departments to take the same measure.

Cuomo said his directive was spurred by a report by state Sens. Jeffrey Klein (D-Bronx) and Diane Savino (D-Staten Island) that found the game luring youths near sex offenders’ homes.