Meta's Instagram Takes Steps Against Sextortion of Teenage Users

Zinger Key Points
  • Instagram introduces safety feature to protect teens from "sextortion," offering guidance on how to handle unsolicited nude images.
  • Meta's Instagram to obscure nudes for teens, reinforcing online safety and mental health, with a feature rollout for teen accounts globally.

Meta Platforms, Inc's META Instagram, the most sought-after social networking platform for teenagers, has cracked down on their safety by taking initiatives to protect them against "sextortion" scams.

Now, victims receiving nude images via direct messages will get a pop-up instruction to block the sender or report the chat and encourage the recipient not to feel pressure to respond. 

The culprits will get a warning against such acts followed by a reminder alert, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Also Read: Meta Faces Flak for Child Exploitation via Subscription Tools on Facebook and Instagram

Reports indicated sextortion is taking a toll on the mental health of teenagers.

Instagram will now obscure nude images that teenagers receive on the social networking site with a message redirecting them to safety tips. 

Instagram will test the new feature shortly, followed by a global launch by default for accounts with birth dates corresponding to teenagers. Teens can turn off the feature at their discretion. Instagram will also promote the feature to the adult accounts. 

Meta does not look to the launch of such features in WhatsApp and Messenger.

Apple Inc AAPL added a similar protection years ago. 

Meta's latest move follows efforts to restrict teen Instagram accounts from harmful content. 

Earlier this year, Meta founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologized to the families of the victims of abuse on social media platforms. 

Meta stock gained over 143% in the last 12 months. Investors can gain exposure to the stock via The Communication Services Select Sector SPDR Fund XLC and Fidelity MSCI Communication Services Index ETF FCOM.

Price Action: META shares are trading higher by 0.32% at $521.49 premarket on the last check Thursday.

Also Read: Meta Under Fire: Walmart and Match Group Slam Company Over Ads Next to Underage Sexual Content

Photo by Solen Feyissa on Unsplash

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