FaceApp: Global concern about photos and millions of users

More than one hundred million active users have FaceApp, which yesterday was in the top positions of free apps for both Android and Apple.

Users of social media – including them and many famous – have been quick to download the application to see how they will show when time and years have passed. And since everyone was having a lot of fun, others watching the time being kind to them, and others humorously seeing their image in the elderly, the issue of personal data security began to be raised. The beginning was made by a Twitter user who has now dropped the post, according to the Independent newspaper, who wrote, “now the Russians have all your old photos.”


FaceApp uses user pictures and “ages” using artificial intelligence technology. Shortly after launching Apple’s and Google’s top app rankings, the first warnings for the “loopholes” of Russian-made application began to sound.

As soon as FaceApp’s photos were released, so quickly they began to hear voices about using the photos in a misinformation campaign or about downloading entire albums from the app. In the US, there have been calls for immediate deletion of the application, while a Democrat senator has asked for an investigation by the FBI and the Federal Trade Commission, citing “serious concerns” on security, information and transparency issues.

Washington Post’s reporter spoke with FaceApp CEO Yaroslav Goncharov, according to which the application uses and processes user photos – but only those the user chooses. “The rest of the pictures stay on your phone. Besides, 99% of users use the application without giving their name and phone, “he says.

Under our terms of use, the app gets “lasting” access to our photos. But according to Goncharov, FaceApp deletes “most” photos from his servers within 48 hours.

According to Goncharov, the application does not use user photos for other uses, such as face recognition. However, again according to the fine print of the application, its users give the right to do whatever it wants with them.

He asserts that Russia’s government authorities have no access to the photographs of the application, and that the company neither sells nor shares information with third parties.

Also, deleting the application does not “lose” from FaceApp the photos uploaded by – former – users. As Goncharov says, interested parties can apply for full deletion of all their information from their application servers, but the process is complicated.

The application was created by Wireless Lab, based in St. Petersburg, but the creators of the application assure that user data is not transferred there. Photo editing is done on Amazon and Google’s servers.

Reproduced by www.aftodioikisi.gr

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