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Crime

Nude pics to combat revenge porn

Ashutosh Pandey
November 8, 2017

Facebook is testing an unorthodox system to combat the so-called revenge porn. It's asking wary users to send the company their nude pictures to prevent anybody else from uploading the same pictures.

https://p.dw.com/p/2nHH3
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Image: picture-alliance/dpa/A. Burgi

Social media giant Facebook has joined hands with an Australian government agency to fight "image-based abuse," commonly known as "revenge porn."

As part of the pilot effort in Australia, users worried about their intimate photos making it to the social media platform without their consent can message themselves their pictures using the Messenger tool.

Facebook then creates a unique "digital fingerprint" of each image to prevent any copies of them being uploaded on Facebook or Instagram by a hacker or a disgruntled lover.

Image-based abuse (IBA), which is not just limited to porn or revenge, is a growing concern in Australia. According to the Office of the e-safety commissioner, one in five Australians aged between 16 and 49 is a victim of IBA. Women aged between 18 and 24 are more likely to be the targets, it said.

"We see many scenarios where maybe photos or videos were taken consensually at one point, but there was not any sort of consent to send the images or videos more broadly," e-safety commissioner Inman Grant told broadcaster ABC News.

Saftey concerns?

Grant sought to allay concerns of users about what Facebook would do with the photos they upload.

"They're not storing the image, they're storing the link and using artificial intelligence and other photo-matching technologies," she said.

Users, who fear that their intimate photos could end up on Facebook, need to first file a report with Grant's office, which will then share it with Facebook.

The pilot project is Facebook's latest attempt to combat the growing menace of revenge porn. In April, it launched tools to allow users to flag intimate pictures posted without their consent.

DW Nachrichten TV | Ashutosch Pandey
Ashutosh Pandey Business editor with a focus on international trade, financial markets and the energy sector.@ashutoshpande85
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