Faceapp pa more! Russian mobile app raises privacy concerns

Faceapp pa more! Russian mobile app raises privacy concerns

- Social media platform feeds are currently flooded by senior citizen selfies

- Russian-owned FaceApp application with filters that make people look older is currently top trending in Apple’s App Store

- Experts have issued warnings regarding some security concerns and how the user data are being handled

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FaceApp is currently taking social media by storm. Social media feeds are flooded with selfies which were altered to make people look older.

As of July 17, 2019, the trending app had been downloaded millions of times in Apple’s App Store.

Millions of people, including many celebrities, joined the FaceApp challenge.

KAMI learned from CBS Los Angeles that experts had already issued warnings about security concerns and how the user data are being used. The popular app is owned by Wireless Lab based in St. Petersburg, Russia. With its increasing popularity, some netizens got worried and shared screenshots of a section of FaceApp’s terms of service.

Cyber Defense League CEO Lou Rabon said, “We should be worried…people have to be concerned about their privacy.”

He also explained that just because the app is coming from Russia, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s dangerous, “but it means that we have less control.”

Philip Lieberman, a cyber analyst, also reiterated Rabon's statement.

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The app's terms of service give the company the right to use photos and other information uploaded by the users for commercial purposes, including their names, likenesses, and voices.

FaceApp may also continue to store user data after it's deleted from the app as stated in its terms of service.

FaceApp issued a statement to address privacy concerns.

Other social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram have been under fire for similar concerns in the past. In a previous report by KAMI, Pitu app also raised concerns because of the same issue.

FaceApp is a mobile application for iOS and Android developed by Russian company Wireless Lab which uses neural network technology to automatically generate highly realistic transformations of faces in photographs. The app can transform a face to make it smile, look younger, look older, or even change gender.

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Source: KAMI.com.gh

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