Teenagers Get Permission to Use Google+

Jan 27, 2012

Google adjusted its age restrictions on its social network, Google+, to allow teenagers to create an account. Google had previously limited users to being 18 and over; the new cut-off at 13 is the same threshold as Facebook. Bradley Horowitz, vice president of product at Google+, said in a company blog post that teenagers often over-share information over the internet, which led Google to add security enhancements in an effort to protect adolescents' privacy.

Google added a Google+ Safety Center which describes the changes. One of the security measures is that Google will intercept posts teens make with a pop-up message reminding the user that sharing publicly enables people from outside the user's circles to view the post and possibly comment on it as well.

There's also a default setting in which "only those in teens' circles can say hello, and blocking someone is always just a click or two away," Horowitz said. In addition, when teens are "hanging out" on the site and a stranger joins, the teens will be removed automatically.