After forcing users to submit their date of birth to use Instagram, the app has introduced new ways to verify the age that the users feed in the US. With this new update, the app is trying to restrict its access to kids below the age of 13 years and use the information to better target customers with ads.
At present, users need to simply upload their ID, a method that may take up to two days to verify, but you now have two more options. It has been nine months since Instagram made age verification mandatory.
You can start by taking a video selfie following instructions by Instagram. After you do so, the app will share it with Yoti, a company that specialises in age verification and has partnered with Instagram for the age verification drill. The results of the video will be deleted after a couple of minutes. Yoti’s tech then uses facial features to determine your age and then matches it with the age that you input. The process takes around 20 minutes for a user.
You can also use the second option, which is called social vouching. This is similar to asking your friends to confirm your age. However, the person who will be vouching for you must be over 18 years old and cannot be vouching for other people at the same time. In addition to this, there are also other protocols in place to use this verification method. You will have to ask three people to vouch for you who need to approve your age within three days of receiving the request.
Instagram has two main reasons why it wants to know about you: first, to make sure that it’s serving you the best possible experience, and second, to prevent underage users. For instance, if you’re 13 or 17 years old, your account will only allow private messages from adults that you know, as well as the various ad options that the app will display.
The age verification feature was optional when it started in 2019. Last year the Meta-backed photo-sharing app made it mandatory to provide date of birth details through prompts to let users fill in the information in the midst of looking at the photos and videos in their feed or uploading new content for their followers. However, these prompts could have been bypassed, until now.
With the age restrictions in place for the present version, it will help Instagram to redirect its young audience to the new app if it is launched in the near future. From a business perspective, Meta will generate more ad revenues by serving targeted ads through age information from users.