US Senator Asks FBI, FTC To Probe Viral FaceApp Over Privacy Risks

Posted: Jul 18 2019, 1:44am CDT | by , in Technology News

 

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US Senator asks FBI, FTC to probe viral FaceApp over privacy risks
Photo by FaceApp

The app gained massive success recently over its realistic transformation of faces.

FaceApp, the smartphone app that lets provides realistic transformations of faces in photos, is under the microscope again after Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer asked the FBI and FTC to commence an investigation over privacy and security concerns.

In a tweet on July 17, Schumer said the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) and the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) “must look into the national security & privacy risks now because millions of Americans have used it.”

Schumer stressed that FaceApp was developed by a Russian company that requires those who downloaded the app to provide “full, irrevocable access to their personal photos and data.”

In Schumer's letter to the agencies, the senator said "providing this level of access to a user's data could mean that any photos taken with the application could be used [publicly] or privately in the future without a user's consent."

FaceApp was indeed developed by a Russian company called Wireless Lab. The app is able to alter faces to look younger or older, to change users’ hair color and hairstyle, or to make faces smile, among many other transformations.

In its Google Play and App Store listings, the app’s developer said FaceApp’s lets users do the following:

- Swap genders

- Let AI find your best hairstyle and color

- Change your age

- Add amazing tattoos

- Let AI find the best style for you

- Check out the Hitman, the Heisenberg filters and many other mind-blowing transformations

The app was released on iOS devices in January 2017 and on Android devices the month after.

To date, there have been 1,270,444 recorded downloads of the app from the Google Play Store with an average rating of 4.4 stars. On Apple’s App Store, FaceApp has a rating of 4.8 stars.

Celebrities like Carrie Underwood, Heidi Klum, the Jonas Brothers, Riverdale‘s Camila Mendes, Vanessa Morgan and Madelaine Petsch, Noah Centineo, Mindy Kaling, Jared Leto and more have tried out the app and posted photos of them on their social media pages.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/81" rel="author">Mandy Jean</a>
Mandy covers the latest news in Tech and Business.

 

 

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