Ten years after the social network first launched, Instagram is finally taking action and asking users to provide their age when creating an account.
As of December 4th, the social media giant will ask users for their date of birth when creating a new account, and if you’re logging in with Facebook, Instagram will use the information from your profile. The new rule change was done with the intention of trying to stop children under the age of 13 from using the app, which would violate the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Previously, users would simply have to confirm that they are older than 13, a system any child could easily circumvent.
COPPA is a law that limits how a company can collect data on children under the age of 13. The law was first introduced in 1998, but as technology became more prominent in the lives of children of 13 and younger, it was expanded in 2012 to apply to more tech-based companies. Earlier this year, popular video-streaming platform Youtube was fined $170 million by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for illegally collecting data from children who watched the video-streaming service.
“Asking for this information will help prevent underage people from joining Instagram, help us keep young people safer and enable more age-appropriate experiences overall,” Instagram wrote in a blog post.
Another welcomed change to the platform is the fact that Instagram will now limit the amount of incoming direct messages and group invites you receive. These changes should be implemented in the coming weeks.
Feature Image: Pixabay