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EU Is Investigating Meta For Possible Child Safety Hazards

EU Is Investigating Meta For Possible Child Safety Hazards
EU officials said on Thursday that Meta Platforms' social media platforms, Facebook and Instagram, will be examined for possible violations of EU online content regulations concerning child safety. If found in violation, the EU regulators might impose heavy fines.
The landmark Digital Services Act (DSA) of the European Union went into effect last year and requires tech companies to do more to combat dangerous and unlawful content on their platforms.
The European Commission said that it has chosen to launch a thorough inquiry into Facebook and Instagram because of worries that the platforms had not sufficiently addressed threats to minors. In September, Meta turned in a report on their risk assessment.
"The Commission is concerned that the systems of both Facebook and Instagram, including their algorithms, may stimulate behavioural addictions in children, as well as create so-called 'rabbit-hole effects'," the EU executive said in a statement.
"In addition, the Commission is also concerned about age-assurance and verification methods put in place by Meta." The regulator's concerns relate to children accessing inappropriate content.
According to Meta, it already offers a variety of online resources for kid safety.
"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 representative for Meta stated.
"This is a challenge the whole industry is facing, and we look forward to sharing details of our work with the European Commission."
A major worry ahead of the vital elections for the European Parliament next month is that Meta is already in the EU's crosshairs for electoral misinformation. Penalties for DSA infractions can reach 6% of a business's yearly worldwide sales.
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Christopher J. Mitchell

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