New Security Concerns Over FaceApp Aging Trend

New App Responsible For Social Media Trend This week, an app that lets users see what they’d look like as an elderly person took social media by storm. It...

(Photo Credit: Forbes)

New App Responsible For Social Media Trend

This week, an app that lets users see what they’d look like as an elderly person took social media by storm. It was all fun and games–until it turned out FaceApp is owned by a Russian company with an alarming user agreement policy. The fine print on FaceApp’s privacy policy says a user’s images, profile information, and name can be used for any purpose by FaceApp’s parent company, Wireless Labs. That means your image could wind up on a billboard in Moscow–or in a database to train artificial intelligence face-recognition programs.

The news was so alarming that Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from New York, called for an investigation into FaceApp. Schumer sent a letter to the FBI and the Federal Trade Commission, warning that FaceApp could pose a national security risk.

“FaceApp’s location in Russia raises questions regarding how and when the company provides access to the data of US citizens to third parties, including potentially foreign governments,” Schumer wrote.

In an interview with TechCrunch, the makers of FaceApp denied working with the Russian government and said most user photos are deleted from the cloud within 48 hours.

“FaceApp performs most of the photo processing in the cloud. We only upload a photo selected by a user for editing,” Yaroslav Goncharov, the founder of FaceApp, said. “We never transfer any other images from the phone to the cloud,” We might store an uploaded photo in the cloud. The main reason for that is performance and traffic: we want to make sure that the user doesn’t upload the photo repeatedly for every edit operation. Most images are deleted from our servers within 48 hours from the upload date.”

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