In an effort to better protect underage users, Meta adjusts default privacy settings on Facebook and Instagram to limit contact by “shady adults”.
Now, whenever a teen joins Facebook, their account will automatically get stricter privacy protections. This includes, but is not limited to, limiting who can see their friends list, the pages they follow, and who is allowed to comment on their posts. For accounts created before this update, meta states (Opens in a new tab) It will start pushing those users to adopt the same settings, but it won’t force them. If all of this sounds familiar, it’s because Instagram implemented very similar changes In 2021 to protect the youth out there.
power to the user
Meta continues to say it’s working on new ways to stop reported and banned accounts from contacting underage users.
One way to do this on Instagram is, as part of testing, to remove the message button, making it impossible for predatory adults to use Instagram messages to contact teenage users directly.
Additionally, the recommendation feed of people you may know on Facebook will also no longer display these flagged accounts.
Access to both Messenger and Instagram is a new notification that encourages teens to use safety tools anytime they feel “uncomfortable” with a conversation. A notification will ask users if they know the person who just messaged them. If No is selected, both applications will show the series of actions (Opens in a new tab) They can do, like block the account or report them.
According to the announcement, the new default privacy settings are rolling out to Facebook today (November 21); Other changes should be the same. We’ve reached out to Meta for clarification. This story will be updated if we hear back.
In addition to the update, Meta announced its partnership with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) to create a new platform to “prevent [teenagers’] Intimate images from being posted online” and spread across the Internet. It aims to help underage users to “take back control” of these leaked images while discouraging such actions in the first place.
While it would be great to add more security features, Meta’s recent track record on privacy has been baffling. On the one hand, the company has improved Instagram blocking system To prevent trolls from harassing you again in october. But at the same time, the platform Implemented a new precise location feature That can make users vulnerable to stalkers or theft.
It’s a somewhat mixed message that can lead to privacy issues for all users; Especially teenagers. For this reason, be sure to check out TechRadar’s Best Parental Control App of 2022.