Kids under 13 will soon be able to have their own safe and secure Instagram account.

If your child is always looking over your shoulder while you're on Instagram wanting an account of their own, you're not alone. Currently, Instagram does not allow children under the age of 13 have an account on their service. This is due to safety concerns.

This might raise some red flags to some parents as social media has a history of excessive bullying, and the potential for predators. It's a legit concern for parents to have as cases like these seem to pop up in the news a lot more lately. Cyber bulling is more prevalent among kids and teens, so Facebook would have to find a way to combat that with the launch of this new Instagram for kids.

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Instagram is fully aware of those issues too. According to  Buzzfeed, Vishal Shah, Instagram’s vice president of product, wrote on an employee message board on Thursday saying

We will be building a new youth pillar within the Community Product Group to focus on two things: (a) accelerating our integrity and privacy work to ensure the safest possible experience for teens and (b) building a version of Instagram that allows people under the age of 13 to safely use Instagram for the first time.

Instagram says that they are still in early development and the company doesn’t have a “detailed plan” yet. Instagram says that they will put a big focus on safety and privacy with this new Instagram for kids, but Facebook (who owns Instagram) has a version of Facebook Messenger for kids ages six to 12. In the past, it has had several privacy and safety issues. For example, according to Buzzfeed, back in 2018, there was a bug in Messenger Kids that allowed children to join groups with strangers, even though Facebook was said to have strict privacy controls.

So this begs the question: Would you feel comfortable with your child under 13 signing up for this Instagram Kids account? It could be completely safe for kids to use and interact with each other to help build social connections. Is it worth the risk of facing privacy and bullying issues?

(H/T-  Buzzfeed)

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