Facebook Camera Effects bring up privacy concerns
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Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg with tape over his devices. Photo Credit: Facebook

Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg with tape over his devices. Photo Credit: Facebook

Facebook Camera Effects offer great AR-powered effects. But they could also harm your privacy

Facebook recently launched an impressive new feature called Facebook Camera Effects. This new platform will enable users and developers to create interactive, AR-powered 3D effects. Users can use these effects for multiple purposes, such as for their profile pictures, video or live feeds.

Facebook launched this new feature at its annual developer conference, F8. The basic purpose is to add more fun and engagement to your daily social posts.

Does Facebook Camera Effects also affect users’ privacy?

This is the era of IoT, and IoT is vulnerable to hacking. If you’re using a smartphone or any other smart device connected to internet, your privacy is susceptible to hackers.

Cameras have always been a concern when we talk about user security. But now, smart cameras have created new opportunities for hackers: They no longer need to work for days on end to hack into your device and steal your personal data. And Facebook’s new Camera Effect feature has made life even easier for hackers and cyber criminals.

For instance, cellular companies are creating HD resolution cameras for their users, not only for the back camera but also for the front camera of your smart device. Hackers or surveillance agencies can easily use these HD images to identify a user through their eyes’ or glass’s reflection on the image.

So, if anyone gets access to the live feed of your camera, it’s very easy for them to monitor your online communications, including whatever you are typing on your keypad, or the websites you’re surfing on the internet, or even your phone’s unlock pattern. And it will be a nightmare for any user if they figure out sensitive data like credit card details or other financial information. Trust me, it’s not as difficult as you think.

Just like Snapchat, which has seen its fair share of breaches, Facebook users have also tasted the sour flavor of seeing their devices get hacked. In January, for example, a group called Our Mine hacked CNN’s official Facebook page.

In short, if you don’t take these cyber security issues seriously, you could become the victim of hackers in a matter of minutes. Similarly, there are a number of posts you can find regarding spyware programmed to access users’ live feeds from the camera and capture your beautiful life without your consent.

Final words

As IoT continues to grow, so do privacy breaches. However, we cannot stop using gadgets that are increasingly becoming basic necessities.

I don’t want people to stop using smart devices. But as a security advocate, I would like you to know the consequences of using smartphone cameras with access to the above mentioned applications. The ideal way to prevent such breaches is by being cautious and proactive in taking preventive measures, such as using VPNs.

The views expressed are of the author.

Geektime invites global tech and startup professionals to share their opinions and expertise with our readers. If you would like to share your point of view, please contact us at [email protected]

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  • Michael

    VPNs are a good preventative measure, but only as long as they don’t keep logs. Free services are advertisements masquerading as privacy software. IMO ExpressVPN and PIA are the only two companies worth using.

  • WILLAM

    A great and informative blog by Mr.hanif
    It is describing the true usage of a vpn. I am using ivacy and purevpn to prevent my self from these consequences.