Snapchat on Tuesday introduced its first parental control center, nearly 10 months after an executive from the company told Congress it was developing tools aimed at helping parents keep their teens safe.
The new tool, called Family Center, promises to give parents more insight into who their teenagers are communicating with on the messaging app — without divulging the content of those conversations. Parents must create their own Snapchat account, and teens have to opt-in and give permission for them to use the feature.
The Senate Commerce subcommittee on consumer protection raised concerns that social media platforms have been used to harm kids and promote destructive acts, such as vandalism in schools, deadly viral challenges, bullying, eating disorders and manipulative influencer marketing.
Snap said it plans to add more features to Family Center in the coming months. Some of the new tools will include the ability for parents to see which new friends their teens have added, allow them to confidentially report concerning accounts that may be interacting with their child, and give younger users the option to notify their parents when they report an account or piece of content.
The company said it consulted online safety experts in developing the features.