Privacy issues raised after FaceApp trend takes over social media

Privacy issues raised after FaceApp trend takes over social media

We'll all die someday. But wouldn't it be cool if you could find out what you'll look like before you hit the grave? If you're not worried about companies using all your life data, you can do exactly this with FaceApp's ageing feature.

The app uses artificial intelligence to alter today's selfies to how you'll look when you're old and grey. While this might help you decide whether to apply nightly under eye cream starting tomorrow, most of us just want to see how flabby our underarms will be. While it's possible that the app does this too, maybe it's a good thing I haven't seen any aged, revealing, full-body selfies.

The FaceApp craze hit social media at the beginning of this week with celebrities like Gordon Ramsay and the Jonas Brothers sharing realistic photos of themselves looking much older than they do now. Crazy what some white hair and added wrinkles can do.

Although the feature is primarily used to garner a chuckle, concerns are being raised that the Russian app could be surveilling, and storing any images you upload to it.

Ultimately, it is likely that those images of your face are ending up somewhere. In today's age of cookies, nothing is sacred. Like it or not, most websites and apps collect data to profile you. Even FaceApp's vague privacy statement says so - so don't upload anything that I wouldn't upload.

While you have rights to the photos that age you, the app keeps them all. When you upload a selfie, it's copied into FaceApp so the magical ageing algorithm process can take place.

FaceApp made its debut in 2017 when it was used to switch your smile into a frown, or to change your gender. But now, part of the reason the app is making such an electric comeback might be due to its higher-quality results. I mean, look at the definition on those neck folds.

If you've hopped on the bandwagon to see your sexy old self, and are now suddenly worried, stop giving the app permission to your photos and storage after you've uploaded a photo. Also, don't let it connect to other social media apps, just in case it's collecting that data too.

Sleep tight tonight...