Facebook is asking for nude photos to fight revenge porn

Delia Watkins
November 9, 2017

During the trial, those anxious about their images being posted as revenge porn have to contact Australia's e-Safety commissioner through an online form, which may then suggest providing them to Facebook. Once this is done, Facebook can then create a digital fingerprint of the picture, marking it as a non-consensual explicit image. CNBC reports Facebook's anti-revenge porn pilot program is available in the U.S., U.K., and Canada.

Right now the measure is part of a pilot project in Australia, which Facebook has announced in collaboration a government agency on e-safety headed by Julia Inman Grant.

Australian e-Safety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant, was at pains to point out that the images would not end up on the social network's servers. That has led to a world where celebrities private photos are hacked and released online, or upset ex-boyfriends take "revenge" by posting nude pictures of their targets on social media.

"Facebook is very hard as well because they don't provide you with a direct line of communication like Google Legal does", he continued.

The new system is very much in its infancy and Facebook assures all users that none of the images are stored.

Rather than sharing the images you would like to protect with Facebook, you would instead share them with yourself via Messenger.

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The user then reports the image and Facebook uses a cryptographic signature to identify that image, meaning that no else can upload it.

The Australian Office of the safety commission declared that they have partnered with the Facebook on a pilot scheme that will allow anyone to report such photos. "Facebook's hashing system would then be able to recognize those images in the future without needing to store them on its servers". Once a photo is reported as revenge porn, it is tagged using photo-matching technology in the hopes of stopping it from further dissemination. "Some information is more valuable for hackers, and hashed photos could be one of them".

"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", she added.

By the way, "revenge porn" is a horrendous phrase.

In April, Facebook announced that it would take steps to combat "revenge porn".

But the real question is - who is ready to share their nudes with Facebook?

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