Facebook wants Brits’ naked photos, so it can stop revenge porn

Facebook wants British users to send in their naked photos in an effort to proactively combat revenge porn.

In a startling display of hubris, following the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal, the social network is extending trials of its controversial scheme to the UK.

As we’ve reported on previously, Facebook’s idea is designed to help people who suspect they could become victims of image sharing from former partners.

If those fearful of revenge porn attacks send in the intimate snaps first, Facebook can block the image before it appears on the site. Then if someone else attempts to upload the same image, it’ll be recognised by the database and will not appear on Instagram, Messenger or Facebook.

While it appears to be a sound idea in theory, it’s a big ask from Facebook given the dramatic erosion of trust in its handling of users’ personal data following this year’s revelations.

The company told the BBC Newsbeat any photos uploaded will be seen by “a very small group of about five specially trained reviewers.” Facebook’s Antigone Davis, the global head of safety, says the original photo will not be stored.

Related: Facebook Cambridge Analytica latest

The block will be pretty easy to get around by manipulating the images, while Davis admits there’s “no 100% guarantee when it comes to photo-matching technologies”. The additional caveat is that users will have to have the photos in question, so if they’re stored on your ex’s phone, then you’re also out of luck.

Overall, it appears as if worried users will simply be sending their intimate photos to Facebook, with absolutely no guarantee it’ll prevent the revenge porn attack, and with no possible sense it can trust Facebook to keep these images safe and private.

However, if it’s a choice between that and potentially avoiding a harrowing and potentially life-changing revenge porn post, then many users may take Facebook up on its offer.

It’s a tough choice in a situation none of us ever want to find ourselves in.

Would you trust Facebook with your most intimate photos and handle them with care? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

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