Jewish community representatives have welcomed the news that social media giant Twitter has introduced a host of new measures aimed at stopping online abuse and harassment.

In an announcement this week, Twitter said it had developed new ways to stop banned users from opening new accounts, and that it had introduced a ‘safe search’ feature to remove offensive words, comments and phrases.

Last year the company banned a number of social media commentators from the so-called ‘alt-right,’ including the editor of the Brietbart News website, which has been derided for hate speech aimed at minorities.

Twitter bosses, who have sought not to police the billions of tweets sent through the site, say they suspended 360,000 accounts in the year to August, but many users have previously got round this by opening new accounts with other details.

In addition, they said the new ‘safe search’ feature will filter potentially sensitive content and posts sent from accounts that have been blocked or muted, meaning they will not appear in general search results.

“This is a welcome move,” said Danny Stone, director of the PCAA Foundation, which supports the All-Party Parliamentary Group against Antisemitism.

“The company has a huge job to do in tackling the level and prominence of abuse on its platform but it is heartening that they are taking such steps.

“We will continue to work with the industry, with government and others to improve policy frameworks and legislation so that social media users are free from racist and other abuse online.”