Facebook adds Trusted Friend and other safety features

During a recent White House anti-bullying conference, Facebook, in order to help users who are being bullied or abused, has created a new 'Trusted Friend' feature on their website. People who use the site can now report any issues seen on there to a friend or even a moderator via the Safety Centre. The Massachusetts-founded company has also revamped their Safety section by simplifying the language used and offering more tips for both adults and young persons.

"In the real world you have a sense of when you need to escalate something to the right organisation", "If someone is calling you names, it might not be appropriate to go directly to the police," said Facebook's director of European policy, Richard Allan.

In the past, Facebook has been accused of being slow to act on claims of bullying and general safety, including phishing scams. The hope is that this new system will make it much easier to protect people and, if needed, serious complaints and concerns can be forwarded onto the dedicated charities or even the police.

The UK Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) has campaigned to have a virtual panic button installed on the site for a long time, and while they are glad about this news, they still have concerns about the ratio of Facebook staff available to support the 500 million users. Richard Allan replied to this concern stating "It is not as simple as a ratio of reports to people. When we pick up a pattern of activity, we can create a system to monitor that."

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Angry Birds raises $42m from investors

Next Story

Microsoft delivers official statement on Nodo delay

12 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

This is fantastic news, there has been a huge issue here in the uk about death threats to Neil Lennon. Hopefully they can improve the system to delete racist, bigoted or illegal pages from facebook. My sister got into a fight over facebook, this system doesn't look good enough but it's a step in the right direction.

No matter how intricate the "protection system" gets, still the weakest link is the end user, most of them just accept whatever crappy app or quiz they are offered in FB, even after a big fat dialog box tells you that this will gain access to your data and of course they use easy to guess passwords and then complain about how insecure a site is; give me a break, being bullied on FB that's just too much, you only have to click and select block a user, how bad ass could be a bully that spend so much time in a PC trying to intimidate you.

Meconio said,
No matter how intricate the "protection system" gets, still the weakest link is the end user, most of them just accept whatever crappy app or quiz they are offered in FB, even after a big fat dialog box tells you that this will gain access to your data and of course they use easy to guess passwords and then complain about how insecure a site is; give me a break, being bullied on FB that's just too much, you only have to click and select block a user, how bad ass could be a bully that spend so much time in a PC trying to intimidate you.

There have been a number of recorded suicides where online bullying was a factor. just because your too cool to be affected by bullies, it doesn't mean other young kids are not.

ILikeTobacco said,

There have been a number of recorded suicides where online bullying was a factor. just because your too cool to be affected by bullies, it doesn't mean other young kids are not.

I suppose 'survival of the fittest' is no longer the case, then. Human evolution is going nowhere if we keep coddling the weakest links.

It's not about being cool or the bravest man, but normal people that have a problem try to find a way to deal with it, killing yourself it's obviously the result of a psychological problem not the default way for everyone, this measure is in the line of "you don't have to face this but simply to pass it over to someone else that can".

Meconio said,
It's not about being cool or the bravest man, but normal people that have a problem try to find a way to deal with it, killing yourself it's obviously the result of a psychological problem not the default way for everyone, this measure is in the line of "you don't have to face this but simply to pass it over to someone else that can".

Define normal. There is your problem. What is a "normal circumstance"? Don't kid yourself in thinking you can generalise bullying and how people react to it as there is probably many varying degrees of exposure to it, in time and in force.

And I'm guessing suicide is the only risk. Get real. Kids running away. That is a distinct possibility and while it may be suicide depending on where they run, it wasn't their intention.

Is always okay to turn to people for support. You don't have to face everything alone even if you can. There is a difference between seeking help and being independent.

Mr. Chronopoulos said,
Who's a Massachusetts based company? I live in MA, and Facebook certainly isn't based here. Please check your facts.

They said Massachusetts founded. It was founded by Zuckerberg when he was attending Harvard...

Hurricane Andrew said,

They said Massachusetts founded. It was founded by Zuckerberg when he was attending Harvard...

The article has been edited. It DID say based. I'm aware it was founded while Zuck was at Harvard. The point I was trying to make was that it's not BASED here. If you had seen the article before it was stealthily edited, you'd see my point.

Mr. Chronopoulos said,

The article has been edited. It DID say based. I'm aware it was founded while Zuck was at Harvard. The point I was trying to make was that it's not BASED here. If you had seen the article before it was stealthily edited, you'd see my point.

You realise you can report a problem to the author of the article without trying to make ego boosting posts on the comments section? Then when it's changed you don't get people correcting you.