Apple released iOS 15.5 today, bringing with it the iPhone maker’s Child Communication Safety in Messages tool to users in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, marking the first international expansion of the tool that notifies children and their parents when a child receives or sends sexually explicit photos via iMessage.
Launched in the US with iOS 15.2 last yearApple’s Child Communications Safety feature in Messages sends warnings to alert children and parents when a sexually explicit image is sent or received on a device connected to iCloud Family Sharing, as well as automatic image blurring explicit messages sent in messages.
Verified by The Apple Post, UK iOS 15.5 release notes show the addition of “new child and parent safety features in Messages”, with Wayback Machine showing Apple’s webpage changing to list Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom as newly available regions after it was reported last month that Apple was planning to expand its new security feature.
When communication safety features for children in messages are enabled, the explicit image a child receives will be blurred and the child will be notified, presented with helpful resources, and reassured that they are ok with it. he does not want to see this photo. As an added precaution, the child may also be informed that, to ensure they are safe, their parents will receive a message if they see them. Similar protections are available if a child attempts to submit sexually explicit photos. The child will be notified before the photo is sent and the parents can receive a message if the child chooses to send it.
The Messages app uses on-device machine learning to analyze attached images and determine if a photo is sexually explicit. The feature is designed so that Apple does not have access to messages.