Instagram is testing an AI tool that scans your age by scanning your face

Instagram is testing new ways for users to check their age, including a third-party AI tool from Yoti that measures how old you are by simply scanning your face.

Officially, you must be at least 13 years old to register for an Instagram account, but for years the company has made little effort to enforce this rule. Until 2019, did not even bother to ask new users their date of birth, rather try to verify this information. Privacy և After child safety experts scatter over coals, Instagram has introduced more and more age check featuresas well as methods highlight young users from adults.

Currently, Instagram only asks users to check their age when teens try to change their date of birth to show it as և 18 or more. Users can send to confirm their age Pictures of different identification cardsև From today, users in the US will have two additional options: social guarantee և AI rating.

For the first method, social vouching, Instagram will ask the user’s three reciprocal followers to confirm how old they are. Mutual followers must be over 18 years old and have three days to respond to Instagram request. The second method, AI assessment, involves sending a video selfie to a third party, Yoti, which uses machine learning to assess a person’s age.

Yoti is a well-known online age և ID verification player, և its technology is approved for use Government of the United Kingdom և: German digital controllers. It uses various facial signals to assess the age of the target. (Although the company itself says so he does not know what exactly these signals are. Wrinkles. A look of unspeakable sadness? Everything is mixed 🙂

You can actually try the Yoti system online right here (The company says it does not store any data you share with it.) և See below for accuracy. Figures for years show the level of error in Ioti age estimates for different age ranges, skin colors and genders.

Yoti data show that its technology works a little worse on female objects և faces with darker skin.
Image by Yoti

Data: shows that the Yoti system is less accurate for females with darker skin, and for under-24s it can be reduced by up to 2.5 years. However, if the tool makes a broad assumption about the user’s age, its accuracy improves. Yoti System 2020 by a non-profit third party organization found that it was 98.89% reliable to guess whether 18-year-olds were over 25 or not. (This means that for every 1000 guesses made by the system, there will be 0 to 11 errors.)

It is not clear how these numbers will be translated when using Instagram, or whether the system is really secure enough for that purpose. For example, we were able to trick the Yoti web display by simply holding the photos in front of our webcam և. And it is not clear what can prevent a minor user from doing the same or seeking the help of an older friend to pass the test.

This is not the only AI tool used by Instagram to assess the age of users. Since last year, the company has been using automated systems to search for underage users. These tools scan information such as users’ birthday records և the age of their friend groups. So, for example, if a user claims to be 20 years old but announces his / her 17th birthday, his / her account will be marked և he / she should check his / her age. Instagram says it is working to add new data points to the system, even testing a language analysis tool that can determine whether a user is an adult or a teenager based on their writing.


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