Facebook developing targeted solutions to combat child exploitation

The tool that focuses on malicious searching shows a pop-up message to people searching for terms on Facebook-owned apps associated with child exploitation. The pop-up warns about the consequences of viewing such illegal content whilst offering ways to get help from offender diversion organizations.

Devdiscourse News Desk | California | Updated: 24-02-2021 07:25 IST | Created: 24-02-2021 07:25 IST
Facebook developing targeted solutions to combat child exploitation
Representative Image Image Credit: ANI

Facebook said Tuesday it is developing new tools and policies to prevent people from sharing content that victimizes children on its platform.

The social networking giant is testing two new tools - one that aims at the potentially malicious searching for child exploitative content and another aimed at the non-malicious sharing of this content on Facebook and Instagram.

The tool that focuses on malicious searching shows a pop-up message to people searching for terms on Facebook-owned apps associated with child exploitation. The pop-up warns about the consequences of viewing such illegal content whilst offering ways to get help from offender diversion organizations.

The other tool is a safety alert that informs people who have shared viral, meme child exploitative content about the harm it can cause while warning them about the legal consequences for sharing this material. This safety alert is issued in addition to removing the content, banking it and reporting it to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).

Facebook has also warned that it will remove accounts promoting child exploitative content.

Further, Facebook has updated its child safety policies, clarifying that "Facebook profiles, Pages, groups and Instagram accounts dedicated to sharing otherwise innocent images of children with captions, hashtags or comments containing inappropriate signs of affection or commentary about the children depicted in the image" will be taken down.

"Under this new policy, while the images alone may not break our rules, the accompanying text can help us better determine whether the content is sexualizing children and if the associated profile, Page, group or account should be removed," Facebook said.

Furthermore, the social networking giant has updated its reporting tools to make it easier to report content that violates Facebook's child exploitation policies. The "Nudity & Sexual Activity" section in Facebook and Instagram now features an option to choose "involves a child", with the company saying that these reports will be prioritized for review.


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