Messenger integrates passphrases for child friend requests

Avatar By Le Williams | 2 years ago

Facebook debuts a new feature today enabling children to request parents’ approval of new contacts. Parents will have access and control through activation of a setting that creates a four-word passphrase used to generate contact requests, Facebook reports.

Notably, the feature is not on by default and requires activation. Once enabled, Facebook will randomly generate a four-word phrase, uniquely assigned to each child.

When the child wants to add a friend to their app’s contacts list in the future, they will show this phrase to the friend to enter in their own app.

As parents receive a contact request from their child, it is noted that both parents must approve the request before the child is permitted to begin a chat session. All contact requests require parents’ explicit attention and confirmation, as previously warranted.

“It does make it easier for kids to friend one another when their parents aren’t Facebook friends themselves. That’s been an issue with the app for some time, and one Facebook first started to address in May when it made a change that finally no longer required parents to be friends, too,” TechCrunch reports.

“While most parents will at least want to know who their child is texting with, there are plenty of times when parents are friendly with someone on a more casual basis – like through the child’s school or their extracurricular activities. But just because two people are neighbors or fellow soccer moms and dads, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re also Facebook friends.”

According to data from Sensor Tower, Messenger Kids saw a sizable increase in installs in the beginning of early June and it has just now passed 1.4 million downloads across both iOS and Android. In addition, its daily downloads are around three-times the amount reported at the end of May.