In an effort to better protect underage users, Meta is adjusting default privacy settings on Facebook and Instagram to limit contact from “suspicious adults”.
Now, whenever a teenager logs into Facebook, their account will automatically have stricter privacy protections. This includes, but is not limited to, deciding who can see your friends list, which pages they follow, and who is allowed to comment on your posts. For accounts created prior to this update, Metastates (opens in new tab) it will start forcing those users to adopt those same settings, but it won’t force you. If this all sounds familiar, it’s because Instagram has implemented very similar changes in 2021 to protect the young people there.
power to the user
Meta goes on to say it is working on new ways to prevent blocked and reported accounts from contacting underage users.
One way to do this on Instagram is, as part of a test, to remove the message button, making it impossible for predatory adults to use Instagram messages to directly contact teenage users.
Additionally, the People You May Know on Facebook recommendations feed will also no longer display these flagged accounts.
Coming to Messenger and Instagram is a new notification encouraging teens to use safety tools whenever they feel “uncomfortable” during a conversation. A notification will ask users if they know the person who just sent a message. If ‘No’ is chosen, both applications will display a series of actions (opens in new tab) they can take, such as blocking the account or reporting them.
According to the announcement, Facebook’s new default privacy settings are rolling out today (November 21); presumably, just like the other changes. We contacted Meta for clarification. This story will be updated if we hear back.
In addition to the update, Meta announced a partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) to create a new platform to “prevent [teenagers’] intimate images are posted online” and spread across the internet. The aim is to help underage users “regain control” of these leaked images, as well as to discourage such acts in the first place.
While it’s great to see more security features being added, Meta’s recent track record on privacy has been mixed. On the one hand, the company improved Instagram lock system to stop trolls from harassing you further in October. But at the same time, the platform implemented a new precise location feature that can make users vulnerable to stalking or theft.
It’s a pretty confusing message that can lead to privacy issues for all users; especially teenagers. So be sure to check it out ‘s best parental control app for 2022🇧🇷