Instagram is trying out new tools to prevent sextortion and other types of intimate image abuse. They aim to make it difficult for scammers to target potential victims on Meta’s apps and online platforms. Real Research, an online survey app, revealed that 68.85% of respondents knew this.


  • 77.25% of respondents support critics’ concerns about Instagram’s approach to teen safety.
  • 69.98% of respondents endorse Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s recent bill signing.
  • 60.40% express profound concern over the potential exploitation of direct messages for sextortion.

Instagram Is Trying out New Tools To Prevent Sextortion

While people overwhelmingly use direct messages (DM) to share what they love with their friends, family, or favorite creators, sextortion scammers may also use private messages to share or ask for intimate images. 60.40% of respondents are extremely concerned, 35.38% are somewhat concerned, and 4.22% are not concerned at all.

Figure 1: How concerned respondents are about sextortion scammers

Additionally, Meta guidelines highlighted that nudity protection will be turned on by default for teens under 18 globally on Instagram, and a notification will be sent to adults encouraging them to turn this feature on. 73.95% of the respondents showed their support for Instagram testing blurred nudity in messages.

Instagram Begins Blurring Nudity in Messages

54.82% of the respondents think it is somewhat likely that Instagram testing blurring nudity in messages will prevent malicious activity on Instagram, and 29.68% think it is highly likely. Contrary to this, 15.50% think it is somewhat unlikely.

Bill That Bans Children Under 14 From Social Media

Last month, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a Republican, signed a bill that bans children under 14 from having social media accounts. 69.98% of the respondents believe the signing of this bill was justified.

Figure 2: Whether the signing of the bill by the Florida Governor is justified?

Actions taken by Instagram against sextortion

Instagram testing blurring nudity in messages might help with their rules and regulations, Instagram emphasized that it already takes “severe action” when it becomes “aware of people engaging in sextortion.” 65.92% said they believed this statement.

Finally, as with many of Meta’s tools and policies around child safety, critics saw the move as a positive step, but one that did not go far enough. The Real Research survey on Instagram testing blurring nudity in messages to protect teens from sextortion revealed that 77.25% of the respondents agree with these critics.

Figure 3: Whether the respondents agree with critics on the steps Instagram is taking


Survey TitleSurvey on Instagram Testing Blurring Nudity in Messages
DurationMay 7 – May 14, 2024
Number of Participants6,000
DemographicsMales and females, aged 21 to 99
Participating Countries Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, China (Hong Kong) China (Macao), China (Taiwan), Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Greanada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Maldives, Maluritania, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar [Burma], Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.