Apple Is Rolling Out Child Safety Feature In The U.K.

Apple child safety faeture
Image: Apple

Apple’s “communication safety in messages” feature will soon roll out for iPhone users in the UK. The new security feature aims to leverage AI to find out any age-inappropriate content shared among kids. Apple’s new security feature will try to curb the rampant incidents of child abuse and easy access to nudity content.

What is the communication safety in messages feature?

The communication safety in messages feature scans for the presence of nudity and pornographic content in messages. This feature will scan for any such messages sent to a child’s phone and will blur the received messages before downloading them.

Moreover, the kids will learn that it is sensitive content and will be guided to child safety groups. If a kid indulged in sharing explicit content, the feature will scan the message contents. It will urge the kid to not forward such messages and will present an option to “message a grown-up.” Thus, kids who are under 13 years can be stopped from encountering age-inappropriate content.

communication safety in messages
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Pressing Concerns over the feature

The feature sounds great for parents who want to safeguard their kids from obscene content in messages. But many users also raise privacy concerns about the communication safety in messages feature. It will have access to every conversation that a child had with his parents and friends. So, it would be a direct breach of privacy for the kids.

But Apple denies all the concerns and brands the communication safety in messages as a necessary tool. Apple claimed that all the data processing and image analysis happens on the device itself. No data is sent to the cloud for processing and no backups are created. Moreover, the AI analyzes messages for the existence of nudity without breaching the end-to-end encryption in messages.

Apple gave further clarification to The Guardian on the feature and said that it doesn’t receive any data from the devices. The feature is designed to identify and curb nudity on the phone itself. Even parents don’t get a notification of such an incident. Only the kids get a warning about an incoming sensitive message or when they try to send such messages.

Communication Safety in Messages is a part of the three major updates that Apple tried to launch last summer. Apple shifted the launch date of the feature after heavy backlash from the privacy and child safety groups. The feature will only be available to UK iPhone users as of now. Apple’s ATT measures made headlines last week and cost Facebook a $13 billion loss.

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