Xbox One gamer’s dad disheartened by shocking US$8,800 bill from Microsoft

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Xbox Elite Wireless Controller
A man checks the new Xbox Elite Wireless Controller during the Gamescom 2015 fair in Cologne, Germany August 5, 2015. Reuters

Lance Perkins, 51, bought his 17-year-old son an Xbox One a few years ago and everything was fine until his son finally decided to add his credit card details to the system for in-game purchases. Perkins had nothing to do with the console until he received a US$8,800 (AU$12,517) bill from Xbox that his son spent on online gaming.

Perkins said both his sons have credit cards which they use to pay for small things like gas. CTV News reported that Perkins received a bill from Microsoft in November 2015 which was around US$800 (approx. AU$1,138), but said he was away and later came to know that one of his employees paid the bill using a blank cheque signed by Perkins.

On Dec. 23, 2015, he received another bill with US$7,625 (approx. AU$10,846). This thousand-dollar bill caught his attention so Perkins dialed the credit card company’s number to ask them why he was not informed about the charges.

"When you have someone telling you that you can play for free, and then all of the sudden they just want your credit card number, a little kid or a youth would not realise what a credit card number is, other than that (it will let them) play more of the game," said Perkins in an interview with CTV News.

Perkins said that the credit card company has agreed to reduce the amount but the whole experience was disheartening. To avoid unauthorised purchases by children, Xbox offers tips to parents and children. The console offers many security features through which Xbox users can keep their credit details secure and to avoid any surprise purchases.

With the Xbox One, Microsoft has also introduced gift cards so that parents can buy these cards to avoid sharing credit card details with the system and their children. It is better and safe for children and parents to create separate user accounts on Xbox for gameplay and in-game purchases.

$8,800 Xbox bill 'disheartening,' gamer's dad says (Credit: CTV News)