Tumblr Removed From iOS App Store Over Child Porn Concerns

Image: Getty Images

The Tumblr app recently disappeared from the iOS App Store, seemingly without explanation. But it's been revealed that the platform's content filters were failing at detecting and blocking child exploitation images, according to statements by the social media company.

In a statement a Tumblr spokesperson said:

We're committed to helping build a safe online environment for all users, and we have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to media featuring child sexual exploitation and abuse. As this is an industry-wide problem, we work collaboratively with our industry peers and partners like the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) to actively monitor content uploaded to the platform. Every image uploaded to Tumblr is scanned against an industry database of known child sexual abuse material, and images that are detected never reach the platform. A routine audit discovered content on our platform that had not yet been included in the industry database. We immediately removed this content. Content safeguards are a challenging aspect of operating scaled platforms. We're continuously assessing further steps we can take to improve and there is no higher priority for our team.

The use of social networks by criminals continues to be a challenge for network operators and law enforcement agencies that face an ever-shifting, ephemeral network of websites and services that are being utilised in order to distribute exploitative and illegal material.

The issue is ongoing with daily updates for the last few days noting "We continue to work to restore our app to the iOS App Store".

Although the app has been removed from the App Store, it remains available in the Play Store and can be accessed in iOS through Safari and other web browsers.


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