Donald Trump Jr., seen during a break from a closed interview in September with staff members of the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of the committee's ongoing probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Donald Trump Jr. has asked to be removed from Secret Service protection, telling friends he wants more privacy, according to two people briefed on the decision.

It's a rare move for a member of the president's family to forgo a security detail, in part because adult children are counseled by the Secret Service that they are quickly seen as targets for those railing against their famous parents.

One close friend of the president's son said Trump Jr. has been talking for weeks about waiving the 24-hour protection that Secret Service agents provide him, his wife and their five children. But it was unclear Monday night whether he had requested his wife and children be dropped from protection. Secret Service spokeswoman Catherine Milhoan declined to comment on whether Trump Jr. and his family were no longer receiving protection.

Trump Jr.'s wish to quit Secret Service protection was first reported by the New York Times on Monday night.

Several former Secret Service officials strongly recommended that the president's son reconsider his choice, saying it could put him in jeopardy.

Jonathan Wackrow, a former member of President Barack Obama's detail and now an executive of a risk-management company in New York, called the decision "shocking."

Trump Jr.'s push to eliminate his 24-hour protection comes at a time when the extended Trump family has faced steady criticism for straining the resources of the Secret Service. The agency's workload for security personnel has demonstrably grown under Trump, who has five children and nine grandchildren.

Rich Staropoli, a former member of the Trump administration and former Secret Service agent, said one frustration has been that the Secret Service has been sending a rotating set of temporary agents to staff the details of Trump Jr.'s young children.

Trump Jr. also privately fumed about an incident involving his son Donald III's detail agents in March. The president's grandson was being chauffeured by agents in an SUV. He awoke to find two agents had been taking pictures of themselves with him while he had been sleeping.