Homeowners are being urged to keep their doors locked at all times due to a dangerous social media trend which involves people inviting themselves into private residences.
Titled “walking into random houses”, the TikTok craze emerged earlier this week after a video of a group of youths trespassing a London family’s home went viral.
The young men filmed themselves opening the gate to the front yard of a young family’s townhouse, before walking past its female occupant who was visibly in the garden.
“What are you doing,” the woman questioned.
In response, one of the men replied, “my aunty Rebecca lives here”.
The group then barged through the front door as the woman cried out to her partner – whose name is James.
After identifying the woman’s partner, the men ridicule, “James, we need to speak to James. Is this where the study group is?”
As the male occupant charges up the stairs to ask the men to leave, a young toddler is heard cooing for their dad before being startled by the men.
While the father desperately tried to usher the men out of his home, the teenager filming the video made his way into the family’s lounge room before sitting on their cream-coloured sofa.
“Is this not where the study group is?” the man questioned again.
“We’ve got kids, man,” the father pleaded in response, prompting the group to leave the house.
One of the men apologised before insisting they thought a study group was being held at the address, with the video suddenly ending.
The unnecessary and frightening ordeal lasted no longer than 50 seconds.
While the original video and TikTok account appears to have since been deleted, shocked viewers were quick to save and reshare the content alongside a number of enraged comments.
“What an actual creep walking into people’s houses with kids there, knocking on a woman’s door and intimidating them on their doorstep all in the name of a VIRAL TIKTOK,” one furious woman tweeted.
“This is beyond stupid and actually dangerous, they are walking into people‘s houses, scaring and intimidating people and thinking it’s funny!” a second person commented.
A third concerned person said: “Another stupid trend that will put lives at risk for clout. You don’t just walk into someone’s home.
“Trespassers get shot everyday. You might end up getting hurt or even killed. Terrible and dangerous.”
The reaction was very similar on TikTok with several people taking to the video sharing app to condemn the group, before declaring they’d report the footage to the platform.
“I’m just shocked, to do that to a family there are no morals … I’m reporting your video,” one TikToker said.
Meanwhile, blogger and influencer Queen Reen slammed the group for the callous act which she said could have had fatal consequences.
“You’re walking into people’s houses that you don’t know and you don’t know what you’re walking into,” she exclaimed.
“How dare you even walk into somebody’s house? This trend isn’t funny, it’s very disrespectful and it needs to stop.”
Metropolitan Police told the Daily Mail UK they were aware the video was circulating online, however no official report had been made.
“Officers are conducting inquiries to establish the location and those involved,” a spokesperson said.
“(We) are keen to speak to anyone with any information.”