ESC

Facebook is Getting Into the Revenge Porn Business

Facebook has teamed up with the Australian government to fight against “revenge porn” and make sure your naked pictures don’t show up on Facebook or Instagram. All you have to do is send Facebook a copy of any naked pictures you don’t want anyone else to see and they’ll keep them off of the site.

There’s no way that could backfire, is there? I mean, what are the odds of some rogue employee taking all those images, which will be connected to your real name and all your personal information including the mountains of personal information Facebook collects about you to sell ads to you, and does god knows what with them? This is a totally secure process, just like iCloud.

Okay, so Julie Inman Grant, Australia’s e-Safety Commissioner, talked to ABC News about the pilot program, which doesn’t actually create a database of naked selfies, but creates encrypted hashes that can be used to identify photos even if they’ve been resized or altered slightly.

“It would be like sending yourself your image in email, but obviously this is a much safer, secure end-to-end way of sending the image without sending it through the ether,” Ms Inman Grant said.

Once the image is sent via Messenger, Ms Inman Grant said Facebook would use technology to “hash” it, which means creating a digital fingerprint or link.

“They’re not storing the image, they’re storing the link and using artificial intelligence and other photo-matching technologies,” she said.

“So if somebody tried to upload that same image, which would have the same digital footprint or hash value, it will be prevented from being uploaded.”

The technology she’s talking about is Microsoft’s PhotoDNA, which is already in use by law enforcement to fight child exploitation, and it does work basically the way she says. But this is not an entirely automated process, so real people will be involved. Once the image is hashed, there’s not a copy of the photo that is stored anywhere and it’s not something anyone can reverse-engineer the original image from. If you were really worried about someone posting a specific image to Facebook or Instagram, this process could prevent it from ever showing up on the social network.

So why not give Facebook your most intimate photos? They have already hoovered up more data about you than you can possibly imagine, you might as well send them some dick pics or show them your tits. I’m sure that the targeted ads for bras in your exact cup size or specific types of condoms are just a coincidence.

[Image: Flickr/Anthony Quintano]

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