Instagram said on Thursday that it is currently working on a new feature to better verify the age of users on the platform. The tool will first be tested out in the United States.
According to the photo-sharing platform, the two tools will help to better verify its users’ age in addition to allowing them to upload their identity proof on the internet.
“When we know if someone is a teen (13-17 years), we provide them with age-appropriate experiences like defaulting them into private accounts, preventing unwanted contact from adults they don’t know, and limiting the options advertisers have to reach them with ads,” Erica Finkle, director of data governance at Meta, said in a blog post.
The company also said it had partnered with the popular online age verification company called Yoti in order to ensure users’ privacy despite the new measure it’s about to put in place.
Users can now upload a video selfie onto the platform in order to verify their age and then Yoti estimates the user’s age based on facial features. Afterwards, the images will be deleted from the systems of both companies upon verification.
Another option is for people to select three mutual followers to confirm the user’s age, and the person vouching must be at least 18 years old.
Instagram launched a kids-only version of its app last year but had been receiving a lot of criticism and opposition over this move. The version would required parental permission in order for a child to join and was supposed to provide ad-freee, appropriate content, and anything “child-friendly” but US lawmakers and advocacy groups aren’t so happy with the moves citing safety concerns.
But with the new plans, it seems Meta will be adamant and continue with the project anyway until Zuck gets called to the Congress once again.