Instagram’s Biometric Age Estimation Expands to Europe, Japan, and More

Instagram is continuing to roll out its facial age estimation tool, with the feature coming to Europe, Mexico, Canada, South Korea, Australia, and Japan. This is part of the platform’s attempts to ensure the user experience is age appropriate.

Biometric Update shared that Instagram’s pilot programme for this technology began in June 2022 in the USA, with the feature then expanding to Brazil, India, and the UK since.

Instagram asks users to turn on their selfie camera, with the platform then capturing an image of their face. This image is then analysed to decide whether they are over 18, with captured data then deleted subsequently. 

Meta rolled out the tech to Facebook Dating in the U.S. in December 2022, and shared that it had prevented 96% of teenagers attempting to edit their date of birth to enable adult privileges.

“We want everyone to experience Instagram in a way that’s appropriate for their age, which means we need to know how old they are – and this is a challenge across our industry”, said Tara Hopkins, Instagram Public Policy director.

UK-based company Yoti provided and developed this technology. Their Chief Policy and Regulatory Officer Julie Dawson, shared “our facial age estimation is a privacy-preserving solution. We built it to give everyone a secure way to prove their age without sharing their name or an ID document”.

Meta have stated that the technology will continue to be introduced across the globe over the next few months.

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