Facebook under fire as teenage sharing restrictions are lifted

Facebook has been attacked by children’s safety campaigners after the social network amended its privacy settings to allow teenagers to open up their profiles to strangers and share posts with anyone.

The changes affect users aged 13-17 who will no longer be limited to sharing content with ‘friends’ and ‘friends of friends’, leading some to claim it would expose children to cyber bullying and exploitation.

Whilst settings will default to allowing posts to be seen by friends only people will now be able to change this to make them visible to anyone they choose, a move Facebook describes as offering more choice.

Anthony Smythe, managing director of BeatBullying, criticised the move, telling the Times: "We have concerns that this age group can now share information in the public domain. Something they think might not be harmful now may come back to haunt them later. This is a move in the wrong direction."

John Glenday

John Glenday is responsible for compiling The Drum's daily morning bulletin and ensuring that overnight breaking news is covered while you're still brushing your teeth. Can also make a mean cup of tea.

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