Published: Thu, July 18, 2019
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

FaceApp: Myths and risks in popular app

FaceApp: Myths and risks in popular app

And now the latest is FaceApp, an app that takes a photo of you and enhances your face to make it look like you're in the twilight of your life. It'd be pretty fun to find out and by the time you delete the app seconds after going "hahaha I look old" the company will have already had access to all of your photos.

Celebrities have been posting "old age" examples of what they would look like using FaceApp.

A developer named Joshua Nozzi posted on twitter saying that It immediately uploads your photos without asking, whether you chose one or not. For the fastest processing, we recommend sending the requests from the FaceApp mobile app using "Settings- Support- Report a bug" with the word "privacy" in the subject line. Most people don't seem to mind, but the app's Terms and Conditions make clear that it has the right to reproduce and publish images you upload. It's also the reason why apps like FaceApp have become so tremendously popular.

He noted that they have managed to develop a new technology by using neural networks to "modify a face on any photo while keeping it photorealistic".

In light of the concerns, Chuck Schumer wrote in his letter: 'FaceApp's location in Russian Federation raises questions regarding how and when the company provides access to the data of USA citizens to third parties, including potentially foreign governments.

In a post-Cambridge Analytica world, in which thousands of people had their personal data misused because of a seemingly innocuous personality quiz, people are rightfully wary of the numerous ways their data could be accessed or exposed by an app developer.

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The pictures are the cunning work of FaceApp, an app that renders your face elderly (or young, or bearded; there are several filters) so that you can get a (slightly worrying) glimpse into the future.

The policy highlights that the objective of this is to "measure traffic and usage trends for the Service", and reiterates that "we will not rent or sell your information to third parties outside FaceApp".

The statement addresses accusations about the uploading and use of user photos. We never transfer any other images from the phone to the cloud. Our support team is now overloaded, but these requests have our priority.

It turns out that any photos you select to edit in FaceApp are uploaded to its servers. We are working on the better UI for that.

While FaceApp said that 99 per cent of users don't log in before using the app, meaning the company doesn't have access to data that could identify the user, Adams said the information collected from users' phones, like cookies, file logs and metadata can be enough to identify someone. Instead of adding dog ears or a pacifier or some other garbage to their photos, FaceApp allows users to digitally alter their selfies to change their appearance, expressions, even their age.

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