MySpace agreed to develop safety enhancements that include letting parents submit children's e-mail addresses to prevent profiles from being created using them, and to respond within 72 hours to complaints of inappropriate content.
MySpace will create and head an Internet Safety Technical Task Force with a mission to find ways to better check ages and identities of those making profiles on social networking websites, according to the agreement.
“We're joining forces to find the most effective ways to keep young children off these sites and to protect the kids who do use them,” said North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper.
“This agreement sets a new standard for social networking websites that have been quick to grow in size but slow to recognise their responsibility to keep kids safe."
MySpace will invite child protection groups, technology companies, and other social networking websites to join the task force, according to Cooper.
“Today's announcement is a landmark step forward in providing new protections for teenage members of social networking sites,”
MySpace chief security officer Hemanshu Nigam said at a press conference announcing the pact.
“Our goal is to nurture and expand this community, while providing for a safer online experience."
Social networking websites have been accused of not doing enough to prevent sexual predators from preying on teenagers who share their lives and search for friends in the online communities.
In October, a 13-year-old Missouri girl hanged herself after being jilted by an online “boyfriend” who turned out to be a neighbouring mother perpetuating a hoax on the child.