Instagram will soon begin requiring users to provide their birthdays if they haven’t already. The company announced today that it will start notifying users to add their date of birth to their profiles in order to help “personalize” their experiences with the app.
The prompt can be dismissed at first, but Instagram assured users that it will become mandatory eventually. The move comes as Instagram seeks to create new safety features aimed at helping younger users, the company explained. Additional protections were rolled out earlier this year, as Instagram gears up to eventually launch a version of their app meant for users under the age of 13. The new safety features, which began to roll out this past March, have made it more difficult for adults to contact teens through the app. The company additionally announced that they will default accounts to private for users that are under the age of 16. Instagram also now restricts adults whose accounts have been flagged as “potentially suspicious” from being able to interact with minors on the app.
Instagram will also request that users to share their birthday information when they encounter a post with a warning screen. The screens themselves are not new, but Instagram previously did not require a user’s birthday before displaying graphic content. The company also has created an AI that is meant to pick up on when kids have maybe lied about their age, hoping that this curbs kids from being disingenuous on the app.
Instagram is just the latest company, along with TikTok, YouTube, and Google, that have announced new changes in order to help teens stay safe while online.