The Instagram platform announced that it is testing new ways to verify the date of birth of its users, especially thanks to the artificial intelligence tool for estimating the age through facial recognition.
The social network of the Meta Group, the parent company of Facebook, WhatsApp and Messenger, has teamed up with British start-up UTi, which is developing an algorithm for facial recognition. As reported by AFP.
Video to confirm
Minor Instagram users residing in the United States who wish to change their age to 18 or older will have to justify their move by taking a video of themselves and sending it to Meta for analysis by the UTy age-determining algorithm, before it is deleted.
Ute asserts that its tool has a margin of error of nearly a year and a half for people aged 13 to 19. The figures provided by the company show greater inaccuracies in the faces of females and people with darker skin.
Another option that Instagram is exploring is asking three of the user’s contacts (all of whom must be adults) to certify the age indicated in the app.
Essentially young users had the possibility to still submit identification papers (which were destroyed within 30 days) to prove their age.
Since 2021, the platform requires all of its users to report their date of birth and confirm the age so that they can access content deemed inappropriate for a young audience.
It has also put in place a lot of control tools for parents, including the ability to limit the time their children spend in front of the screen or schedule breaks.
Evolution in Instagram speech
These measures represent an evolution of the discourse of Instagram, which previously considered it not responsible for verifying the age of its users.
Meanwhile, the platform was shaken in 2021 by documents leaked by former Facebook employee Frances Haugen showing that network executives were aware of the application’s risks to the mental health of minors.