Popular social media app Snapchat is changing its friend recommendation feature following calls for increased safety on the app.
The company is making it harder for adult strangers to find teens in its app by limiting friend recommendations in its “Quick Add” feature, reports Engadget.
The app now will not show the accounts of 13 to 17-year-olds in Quick Add unless they have “a certain number of accounts in common,” according to Snap.
While the change will not prevent adults and teens from connecting at all, it could make it more difficult for strangers to find teens they don’t already know.
In a blog post, the company said the change was part of its work to “combat the fentanyl epidemic” and keep drug dealers from finding “new ways to abuse Snapchat.
The company has faced scrutiny over its handling of drug dealers on its platform in recent months.
Lawmakers and safety advocates have pushed Snap to do more to keep dealers off of Snapchat following reports of overdoses linked to drugs bought through the app.
Snap also said that it has improved its ability to proactively detect “drug-related content” on its platform, with 88 per cent of “drug-related content” now being “proactively detected” with AI.
The company also noted it has staffed up the team that works directly with law enforcement agencies and has “significantly improved” its response time to law enforcement requests.