‘What ifs’ are some of life’s biggest mysteries; What if I was male or female? What if I was sixty years old? Answering these questions is what has made Faceapp such a huge player in the photo and video editing space. Faceapp is an application for Android and iOS devices developed by Wireless lab that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to generate highly realistic transformations of human faces by using neural networks. But even amidst this app’s rising popularity, it is surrounded by a thick cloud of controversy as questions arise on the privacy and security risks of using this app.
While photo privacy may not seem like such a big deal, more and more people are keeping screenshots and photos of sensitive information in their phones’ gallery. Such data can all be vulnerable to apps that require access to your photo gallery as most users don’t secure their devices let alone know what is VPN and how the VPN service can add security and privacy to your device.
The ability to control the information you reveal about yourself on the internet and who accesses it has continued to be of growing concern. Social networking sites and apps such as Faceapp pose additional challenges as you can have your private information obtained and used unexpectedly by other parties with malicious intent.
Below are various ways in which using Faceapp may pose a risk to you.
Why is Faceapp not safe?
Unlike other apps, Faceapp does not carry out on-device processing. Any photo you upload to the app automatically uploads to the cloud for processing. The information is then relayed to the data centre, processed, and sent back to the edge device. This transfer of data between the device and cloud increases the risk of your data being accessed remotely and misused. Another security risk comes in through the fact that even if you delete the app, Faceapp can still retain a copy of your photograph.
The Terms and Conditions.
iOS users are also at a greater risk since even with photos permission set to ‘never’, Faceapp can still access your library. While the apps developers released a statement addressing critical security issues like deleting images from their servers and not sharing any user data with third parties, it is imperative to have all your bases covered by taking all measures to protect yourself, preferably using a VPN service.
Use a VPN?
The obvious question here is what is VPN? VPN service (Virtual Private Network) is an encrypted connection from your device to a remote server. Although a VPN service cannot make your online connections completely anonymous, it is a great asset when it comes to increasing your privacy and security when used within legal guidelines.
A VPN service encrypts data you send across the internet, making it unreadable. Your activities cannot, therefore, be monitored by a third party or by your ISP. You should make your privacy and security online a priority by using a VPN service.
Jaden Adelberg is a writer for technewsvision.com covering entertainment, internet, lifestyle and science. She joined Tech News Vision after graduating from Roanoke College with bachelor’s degrees in English and Creative Writing. Prior to Tech News Vision, Jaden held internships with Showtime and Roanoke College programs including The Writers Project .