Snapchat rolls out new safety features to protect teens

Snapchat rolled out enhanced safety features for teens including the ability to block requests from bad actors who were already blocked by the user

Published - June 25, 2024 05:56 pm IST

FILE PHOTO: Snapchat has announced a new set of safety features for teenagers on the platform.

FILE PHOTO: Snapchat has announced a new set of safety features for teenagers on the platform. | Photo Credit: AP

Snapchat has announced a new set of safety features for teenagers on the platform like updates to its account blocking functionality and warning alerts that pop up when a teen receives a message from a stranger. The efforts are to address concerns around sexual predators on social media platforms, which has resulted in serious crimes including sextortion. 

In a blog posted released on Tuesday, the company shared that the blocking feature has been enhanced so users can now block friend requests from bad actors who were already blocked by the user when they were sent using other accounts created on the same device. This helps to limit outreach from other accounts created by the same blocked user. 

They will also frequently remind users about which friends they share their location with through Snap Map. Also, there will be a simplified location-sharing feature making it easier to customise which friends can view their location. 

Snapchat is expanding the pop-up warning feature which had been introduced in 2023, which shows up if a user adds a friend who they don’t share mutual friends with or have in their contacts. This pop-up alert will now also include when they receive a chat from someone who has been blocked or reported by other users or are from a region where the teen’s friend network isn’t in. This feature will be available first in the U.S., UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Nordics and portions of Europe. 

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Additionally, strangers won’t be able to send a friend request to someone, especially if they are using Snapchat in locations usually linked to scams. This feature is available in a few countries currently and will be launched in India in a more localised form eventually, the company shared. 

“Young people across India love spending time on our platform, and we are dedicated to making it a safe and positive place for everyone, especially teens. Our newest safety features are all about supporting genuine friendships, empowering teens to make smart choices, and ensuring that every Snapchatter feels secure and confident while using our app,” Uthara Ganesh, Head of Public Policy-South Asia, Snap Inc. stated. 

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