Snapchat Improves Parental Oversight Tools

Snapchat unveils new updates to its parental oversight and control options, which will allow parents to better manage their children’s privacy and safety when using the app.

As part of updates the app is rolling out in the coming weeks, parents will be able to easily access and edit their child’s settings through the Family Center tool

In a statement, the Snap team shared that they “work closely with parents and online safety experts to help make Snapchat a fun and safe environment for our entire community.”

The changes will make the Family Center tool easier to find, so parents can access it directly from their profile, or by going to their settings.

This means they can easily see and edit their teen’s settings, including who is able to contact them and whether they are sharing their location with anyone. 

Parents can also restrict their teens from using the ‘My AI’ chatbot feature, following criticism when it launched last year due to its lack of safeguards. 

Early tests of the AI-powered chatbot revealed a lack of age-gating mechanisms when it readily provided advice on inappropriate topics to the app’s teenage users.

This ranged from answering questions on how to mask the smell of alcohol and marijuana, to offering advice to teens about sexual relationships.

Snapchat says the ability for parents to opt-out and restrict their child’s access to the ‘My AI’ chatbot feature builds on its current safeguards. 

The app says its safeguards now include “protections against inappropriate or harmful responses, temporary usage restrictions if Snapchatters repeatedly misuse the service, and age-awareness.”

To learn more about Snapchat, you can visit its website here.

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