Experts warn of the risks of using the FaceApp editing app, which has gone viral in recent days with the “gender change” filter. According to the critics, the app does not inform what it does with the data provided by users – which may be improperly feeding banks of facial recognition.

Developed by the Russian company Wireless Lab, the publisher has a standardized privacy policy that offers “no protection at all,” as technology commentator Stilgherrian explains to ABC News.

In the privacy policy, the company says it uses “third-party analytics tools to help us measure traffic and usage trends for the service. These tools gather information sent by your device or our service, including the web pages you visit , add-ons, and other information to help us improve the service. ”

Negative history

In 2019, when the publisher pumped his aging filter, a number of privacy flaws were identified. At the time, the company clarified that users can request removal of data from the cloud at any time. Just access Settings, click on the “Support” tab and the option will appear on the screen.

When clicking on the option, the following warning is displayed: “Even without the request to remove data, all photos are automatically deleted within 48 hours after the last editing operation”.

FaceApp: to use or not to use?

That is the question. According to lawyer Michael Bradley, to be a victim of future uses of facial recognition, all you need is a photo on an online platform with your name and other identification data.

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Therefore, anyone who has a personal account on Facebook or Instagram, for example, is already a possible target. Thus, the lawyer says that FaceApp “does not add much more danger”, but considers that consent to use this data would be an additional step.

The president of the Australian Privacy Foundation, David Vaile, is more direct. “Short answer: don’t use it,” he told ABC News. According to the president, the license is so flexible that developers can claim that you have given permission for them to send the data where and whomever they want.


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