Preventing Accidental Purchases on Android Based Devices

Article ID: 421
Last updated: 24 Aug, 2017
Revision: 4
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Posted: 03 Dec, 2014
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Updated: 24 Aug, 2017
by Andrew Sharrad

Problem

In-app purchases running up large bills on the Google play store. It is not always easy to spot an in-app purchase that charges you real money rather than in-game points or credits. If you are not careful, it is easy to spend hundreds or even thousands of pounds without realising it. These bills are your responsibility and not the responsibility of the laptop or tablet manufacturer.

Cause

Many games allow purchases of extra coins, credits, points, etc. It can be difficult to track exactly how much you have spent on these point or add-ons, or how many of these you have used when you play the game.

Instructions

Method 1: Change the Google play store password behaviour

  1. Open up the google play store
  2. Press the Menu button ( Google Play Store Menu Icon )
  3. Go to "Settings"
  4. Press "Require authentication for purchases"
  5. Choose "For all purchases"
  6. Enter the password you use for your Google account
Note: It is a good idea to set the password on your Google account to be a different password to the one used to switch on or unlock your device.

Method 2: Remove your credit card information from Google Play

  1. On a computer go to http://wallet.google.com
  2. Log in with your Google Account
  3. Click "Payment Methods" (this will be on the left)
  4. Next to your credit/debit card click "remove"
Note: This will stop ALL google play purchases without you adding another card. However you can buy pre-paid cards for the Google play store from most supermarkets, Boots, Currys, PC World, the Post Office, Amazon, and Shell Petrol stations. These will allow you to continue to make purchases on/with your Google play account but will limit any financial damage caused by accidental purchases if they are the only payment method on your account.

Applies to:

  • Tablets running the Android Operating System.
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