Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, announced Sunday it will begin rolling out a paid subscription program allowing users and businesses to verify their accounts with a blue badge.
In a Facebook post, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the new verification system, called "Meta Verified," will cost $11.99 month on web or $14.99 a month for iPhone users.
The announcement comes after Elon Musk, the billionaire Tesla founder and owner of Twitter, created a paid-for verification system known as Twitter Blue after taking over the company last year. Twitter also announced Friday that users who do not subscribe to Twitter Blue will soon have to give up using text messages as a two-factor authentication method to secure their accounts, and instead must use other verification methods.
According to Zuckerberg, the subscription service will increase authenticity and security across Meta's services by verifying users accounts with a government ID. He said this will create extra protection against impersonators, and subscribers will have direct access to customer support.
The new product will be available in Australia and New Zealand starting this week.