Snapchat to limit teen friend suggestions to prevent contact with strangers

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Snapchat implements a new security feature that limits the friend suggestions teens see on the app (via 9to5Mac). Kids ages 13 to 17 will now only get suggestions who “have a certain number of friends in common with this person” through Snapchat’s friend suggestion feature, called Quick Add.

It’s unclear how many mutual friends a user needs to share with a teen to appear on their quick add list, but Snapchat says it will help users really know each other in real life. The platform also plans to add new parental control tools it touted last year and “give parents more insight into who their teens are talking to” while still allowing teens a sense of privacy.

These changes come as Snapchat works to prevent users from exploiting the platform for drug trafficking in the wake of a fentanyl epidemic this applies to both adults and young people. Snapchat reports that it’s getting better at detecting drug-related content, increasing its proactive detection rate by 50 percent since October.

Last year, a report from NBC first shed light on young adults who used the platform to buy prescription and recreational drugs and were given fentanyl instead. Since then, Snapchat has added security measures such as These include its Heads Up educational portal, which warns users about the risks of fentanyl, and reporting tools to combat drug-related activities.

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