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A Lesson From FaceApp: We Are Concerned but Don’t Really Understand Privacy Issues

FaceApp, the world’s most downloaded app last week is creating a wave in many parts of the world. This is an app with impressive features, capable of transforming young faces into old and changing face gender. In just one week, FaceApp has attracted a lot of public interest. Experts are concerned that FaceApp is raising […]

FaceApp Privacy

FaceApp, the world’s most downloaded app last week is creating a wave in many parts of the world. This is an app with impressive features, capable of transforming young faces into old and changing face gender.

In just one week, FaceApp has attracted a lot of public interest. Experts are concerned that FaceApp is raising security issues of more than 150 million users because of its ability to collect user data and all images are processed in the “cloud” although Yaroslav Goncharov, CEO of FaceApp, confirmed that uploaded images will be deleted after 48 hours of existence on the system and not shared with a third party.

Since then, many related issues have been raised: “Have you read the privacy policy or not?”, “How much do you know about this company?”, “Did you know that FaceApp is based in Russia? “

What is the biggest concern about FaceApp today?

In addition to using data and images from users, the biggest question is: “Does FaceApp use this data for other purposes?”.

According to experts, this app collects user face images. After that, the app will bring this data to an extremely large server system in the cloud. With the support of AI (artificial intelligence), FaceApp will return to users the image results they want.

Experts also claim that this activity can be applied in marketing to help sellers evaluate the needs and interests of users. At a higher level of privacy and security, it will be used for malicious purposes, such as using iris or fake faces to penetrate security systems and devices.

From excitement to resentment

From excitement, users quickly turn to feel … a little embarrassed, and start to feel angry because: “We have been tricked !!!”. But is FaceApp really worse than Facebook or any other tech app?

Many people believe that FaceApp is not dangerous because it is not so different from thousands of other apps on App Store and Google Play. Not only does FaceApp but most others have been collecting and storing countless other data that we, the naive and innocent users, agree to provide.

We care but don’t really understand privacy issues

According to FaceApp Terms of Use, Once accept to use FaceApp, the user agrees to provide their privacy “for free” to get an intriguing photo. According to WIRED magazine, although there are differences in language, in fact, this term is not much different from Facebook’s.

The problem is: “Why are you worried that FaceApp uses your personal information, while other tech giants, Facebook, Google, for example, have been doing it more than we think? “.

A Lesson on the culture of using apps

What is more important in this FaceApp case is not merely anger or embarrassment. This is the wake-up call that makes us – those born and raised in the technology era – think about the potential effects of the technology in our lives.

Security issues are complex and even… boring. However, just for a moment, take some time to ponder your habits. It’s high time that we think seriously about the applications that we have, that we’re going to download to our smartphones or tablets, and we need to be more concerned about the terms of service and their security issues.

How many hours do you spend on surfing Facebook newsfeed, pressing like, heart, anger and sad buttons for the posts? Have you ever worried that posting your personal photos on social networking sites is also a concern?

As long as you still take check-in photos, share moody captions and press react buttons, concerns for FaceApp is nothing.

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