July 28 (India Today) – Instagram is determined to make the app safer for young users. The Facebook-owned messaging app announced that the users who are under the age of 16 will not have a public account, their account will be set to private by default.
Instagram will send a notification to users under 16 asking them to switch to a private account from a public account. As per the terms and conditions of Instagram, a user should be at least 13 years old to sign up for Facebook or Instagram.
Instagram said in a blog post that it does not want young people to interact with adults they don’t know. And the only way to curb this is to make the accounts private of young people.
Announcing the feature, Instagram wrote, “Starting this week, everyone who is under 16 years old (or under 18 in certain countries) will be defaulted into a private account when they join Instagram.
Private accounts let people control who sees or responds to their content. If you have a private account, people have to follow you to see your posts, Stories and Reels. People also can’t comment on your content in those places, and they won’t see your content at all in places like Explore or hashtags.”
The Facebook-owned company shared that in a study conducted, it was found that young people chose a private account instead of a public account when they signed up for Instagram but they appreciate a more private experience.
The new settings will be applicable to new Instagram users. For young people who already have a public account on Instagram, the app will a notification highlighting the benefits of a private account and explaining how to change their privacy settings.
Instagram has also developed a new technology that will help the app in detecting the adult accounts that are displaying potentially suspicious behaviour and stop those accounts from interacting with young people.
“By “potentially suspicious behaviour”, we mean accounts belonging to adults that may have recently been blocked or reported by a young person, for example,” the company said.
Instagram will stop showing the accounts of young users in Explore, Reels or Accounts Suggested to the suspected adults. They will also not get the option of following the young people on the app even if they find their account by entering the username.
Instagram is rolling out the changes in the US, Australia, France, the UK and Japan to start and will expand to more countries soon.