Tumblr was removed from Apple's App Store because child porn slipped through its filters

ShutterstockThe Tumblr app went down on Friday.
  • Tumblr’s app was removed from Apple’s App Store because the company found child pornography had been slipping past its filters.
  • In a blog post last week, Tumblr said it was resolving an issue with the iOS app.
  • The Download reported on Monday that the company finding child pornography on its platform was the cause.
  • Tumblr provided the Download with a statement confirming the report, which can now be found on its help center blog.

Tumblr’s app vanished from Apple’s App Store on Friday, and on Monday it was revealed that it was taken down because child pornography had been slipping past its security safeguards.

Tumblr said last week that its support team was working to “resolve an issue” with the iOS app. On Monday, The Download reported that the app was removed due to child pornography slipping past its security filters.

After The Download published, Tumblr updated its help center blog post with the following statement (emphasis ours):

“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.”

Apple declined to comment, but a spokesman directed Business Insider to Tumblr’s blog post. At the time of writing, the Tumblr app is still unavailable on iOS, but is downloadable on the Google Play store for Android users.

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