EU launches probe into Meta’s child protection measures on social media platforms


Facebook parent company, Meta has been hit with a major investigation from the European Union on Thursday over alleged breaches of the bloc’s strict online content law concerning child safety risks.

The European Commission, the EU’s executive body, said in a statement that it is investigating whether the social media giant’s Facebook and Instagram platforms “may stimulate behavioural addictions in children, as well as create so-called ‘rabbit-hole effects.’”

The Commission expressed concerns about age verifications on Meta’s platforms and privacy risks linked to the company’s recommendation algorithms,Reports The New York times.

“We want young people to have safe, age-appropriate experiences online and have spent a decade developing more than 50 tools and policies designed to protect them,” a Meta spokesperson told CNBC by email.

“This is a challenge the whole industry is facing, and we look forward to sharing details of our work with the European Commission.”

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The Commission’s decision to initiate an investigation follows a preliminary analysis of a risk assessment report provided by Meta in September 2023.

Thierry Breton, the EU’s Commissioner for Internal Market, stated that the regulator was “not convinced that Meta had done enough to comply with the DSA obligations to mitigate the risks of negative effects to the physical and mental health of young Europeans on its platforms.”

The EU announced it will carry out an in-depth investigation into Meta’s child protection measures “as a matter of priority.” The bloc can gather evidence via requests for information, interviews, or inspections.

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