Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

Explained: How Instagram’s New AMBER Alerts Help Find Missing Children in 25 Countries

Instagram will use information like the city one has listed on the profile, IP address and location to determine if an AMBER alert should be sent or not.
June 3, 2022
Children_ILO & UNICEF
Photo for representation only. Credit: Pixahive

Meta announced earlier this week that AMBER alerts will soon be rolled out to Instagram in 25 countries. With these alerts, users will get notifications of missing children in the area. Facebook had this feature since 2015 and helped find hundreds of children since it was launched, said Meta.

The new alerts for Instagram were developed in partnership with many organisations such as National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) in the United States and the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children.

“We know that the chances of finding a missing child increase when more people are on the lookout, especially in the first few hours. With this update, if an AMBER Alert is activated by law enforcement and you are in the designated search area, the alert will now appear in your Instagram feed,” said Instagram in a blog post.

How it AMBER Alerts work?

AMBER alerts will be specific to the search area. It means that if a user receives an alert, it would mean that a search for a missing child is in progress in the vicinity.

“The alert will include important details about the child such as a photo, description, location of the abduction and any other available information that can be provided. People can also share the alert with friends to further spread the word,” Instagram said in the post.

Instagram will use information such as the city you list on your profile, your IP address and location (if turned on) to determine if an AMBER alert should be sent to you or not.

Which Countries Will Get AMBER Alerts?

The 25 countries include Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Ecuador, Greece, Guatemala, Ireland, Jamaica, Korea, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Romania, South Africa, Taiwan, Ukraine, the UK, the United Arab Emirates and the US.

Instagram said in its post that it is working on bringing the feature to more regions in the future.