Snap Outlines Drig Enforcement Measures for Fentanyl Awareness Day

Today is National Fentanyl Awareness Day, and Snapchat is marking the event by highlighting the various initiatives that it’s implemented to both stop the spread of drug-related content in the app, and provide education to its user community.

Snapchat says that it’s continually improving its systems in order to proactively find and shut down dealers’ accounts, with its latest models now proactively identifying around 94% of all detected illicit drug activity in the app, ensuring that it can be removed before any Snap users see it.

As per Snap:

“Knowing that drug dealers use a range of services to communicate, we work with experts and other tech companies to share patterns and signals of drug-related content and activity, allowing us to improve our proactive detection efforts to find and remove drug content and dealer accounts. Our Law Enforcement Operations team has grown more than 200% in the past 5 years, and about 80% since 2020, and we typically respond to valid legal requests within two to three weeks, and to emergency disclosure requests within 30 minutes.”

Snap says that its Trust and Safety Team responds to drug-related reports in under an hour, on average, while it also blocks search results for a wide range of drug-related terms.

In addition to this, Snap’s also working with a range of drug awareness and assistance organizations, including the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), Shatterproof, Truth Initiative, and the SAFE Project, in order to provide expert guidance and advice to users on drugs and related concerns.

Finally, on fentanyl specifically, Snap’s partnered with Song for Charlie, a leading fentanyl awareness organization, to run PSAs, which also includes a special edition of “Good Luck America”, its original news show.

This is an important area of focus for Snap, because research has shown that the app’s young audience, and its focus on ephemeral messages, has made it a key medium for drug-related interactions, including transactions organized in the app. As such, and amid the broader fentanyl crisis, Snap needs to do all that it can to ensure that it’s keeping its users safe, and addressing illegal activity where possible, within the capacity of privacy limits.

You can read more about Snap’s anti-drug approaches here