Instagram is working on ‘nudity protection’ technology to prevent users from sending unsolicited pictures

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Instagram application on Google Playstore

Key points:

  • It appears that Instagram is finally taking proactive measures to prevent users from sending unsolicited pictures
  • The application will automatically blur images sent as a Direct Message if it contains nudity
  • The nudity protection technology will cover photos that may contain nudity in chat

Better late than never. It appears that Instagram is finally working on ‘nudity protection’ technology to prevent users from sending unsolicited pictures. After continuous pressure from authorities, Instagram users, and other parties to curb users from sending unwanted ‘nude pictures, the platform is now working toward making the application safe for users. 

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How will the nudity protection technology work?

Researchers Alessandro Paluzzi shared a screenshot that provides a sneak peek into how the nudity protection technology would work. The new feature will blur out images if it thinks contains nudity and let the user decide if they want to see the clear and unblurred image.

Meta, Instagram’s parent company has confirmed that this feature is in development. This function will add an optional user control which will help users protect themselves from unsolicited nude photos and other unwanted messages. 

Meta has also stated that the new technology will not allow even Meta to uncover what’s beneath the blurred image and share them with third parties. Liz Fernandez, Meta’s spokesperson said that they are collaborating with several experts to ensure that new functions safeguard a user’s privacy while giving them control over all the messages they receive. 

The company has said that it will issue an update regarding new features over the next few weeks. 

Why is Instagram introducing nudity protection technology?

According to a report released earlier this year by the Center for Countering Digital Hate, a British NGO, Instagram’s tools have ignored around 90% of abusive direct messages sent as images to high-profile women. In addition, Men frequently sent pornographic photographs, and the “hidden words” option was unable to totally block out expletives such as “b*tch.”

Further, a report published by The Pew Research Center revealed that around 33% of women below the age of 35 were sexually harassed online. 

The development of the new Instagram feature comes at a time when cyber flashing, which involves sending unwanted sexual messages to strangers online, frequently women, may soon be declared a crime in the UK if the Online Safety Bill is approved by Parliament.

However, most of the US does not have laws against cyber flashing, although Texas considers it a misdemeanour since 2019. This is despite the fact that some professionals think it might have an equally negative psychological impact as physical sexual abuse. 

As the calls for a safer internet grow, social media companies are expected to tighten their grip on such issues in the next few years. 

Keep reading iTMunch for the latest social media-related news.

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Feature Image: Photo by Souvik Banerjee on Unsplash

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Karandeep is a technical content writer based out of Pune, a city in India that is also known as the Oxford of the East. His journey with writing started in 2014 when he decided to try his luck in a gaming startup as a Content Developer. Since then, he has written on a wide range of topics within the gaming and the tech space. Apart from his love for gaming, Karandeep is keeping tabs on the hottest trends in the tech industry. After completing his Bachelors in Business Administration (BBA) from Symbiosis International University, Pune, he worked as an intern in an NGO that focused on urban development.
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