Is the "FaceApp Challenge" Safe?

The FaceApp challenge is fun — if handing your data to a Russian company is a good time. But the privacy risks the app poses are actually quite common.

Facing the Tech

Drake, Sam Smith, Lil Nas X, The Jonas Brothers, Dwayne Wade, Kevin Hart, James Marsden, Busy Philipps, Mindy Kaling, Jared Leto, Adam Scott, The Queer Eye Cast, Gordon Ramsay, Lebron James, Diplo, and The Jonas Brothers. They all participated in this summer's viral hit is the "FaceApp challenge" — but is it safe? which uses artificial intelligence to generate highly realistic transformations of faces in photographs. The app can transform a face to make it smile, look younger, look older, or change gender. The app, created in Russia, previously gained attention with features that would change a photo's expression gender. Researchers say FaceApp presents risks to data security privacy.

Like many mobile apps, it can access your photo gallery and track your IP address. FaceApp (like many other apps) may upload and store your photos to the cloud then sell them to third parties. There are multiple options to manipulate the photo uploaded such as editor options of adding an impression, make-up, smiles, hair colors, hairstyles, glasses, age or beards. Filters, lens blur and backgrounds along with overlays, tattoos, and vignettes are also a part of the app. The gender change transformations of FaceApp have attracted particular interest from the LGBTQIA and transgender communities, due to their ability to realistically simulate the appearance of a person as the opposite gender.

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has called for a federal investigation over potential national security and privacy risks to Americans. Carton FaceApp's CEO responded to concerns by confirming the company processed photos on the cloud, but said most images are deleted within 48 hours. He also said users could scrub their data from the company's servers but only via the app's "report a bug" function. Experts are not reassured however, and some say this is an issue across the tech industry.


07/20/2019 10:28 AM
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  • Matovu S.
    07/20/2019 10:29

    Wow, facebook hates competition

  • Ana Y.
    07/20/2019 10:32

    I think all app we use it have access to our privacy They even listen to all conversations

  • Tamer M.
    07/20/2019 10:36

    Because it’s a Russian app, the US is concerned now.. hypocrisy

  • Darren F.
    07/20/2019 11:11

    I'm quite possibly the only person on my newsfeed that hasn't succumbed to this silly app!

  • Faice D.
    07/20/2019 11:26

    Such a wonderful spying device. The Trojan horse of the 21 century. So appealing that people download it without questioning.

  • Judith O.
    07/20/2019 12:19

    Sorry at this point, I don't trust anything Russian!!!!

  • Rachmattullah
    07/20/2019 12:34

    Beware,that s , google eyes

  • Rachmattullah
    07/20/2019 12:35

    They are Freemason ,want control with 1 controller

  • Josh M.
    07/20/2019 12:49

    How is Facebook any different?

  • Isaiah E.
    07/20/2019 13:48

    Lmao. Russians, or anyone at that, dont need an app to spy on you jackasses.... snapchat is worse then that app.. Facebook, insta, every app you use... hell, you dont even need an app for someone to spy.

  • Gary M.
    07/20/2019 17:09

    DO NOT USE THIS APP !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Maurice L.
    07/20/2019 17:10

    I am in rush to see how i look when i get older. You already may have older family members . Figure it out you will get much better results. WTF people!

  • Ellis D.
    07/20/2019 17:18

    Grats it can look at all the porn I have saved and it can see the VPN ip address I use

  • Dare M.
    07/21/2019 03:58

    And the gringos have one too. Facebook.

  • Kenny K.
    07/21/2019 04:20

    This is very true somebody needs investigator make sure everybody's safe make sure it's safe

  • Joanne L.
    07/21/2019 11:33

    Not surprised, morden day trojan horse.

  • Kenneth V.
    07/21/2019 14:05

    .. everytime something international that surpasses american brand will always be a threat to US national security just like what they did to HUAWEI

  • César-Gabriel J.
    07/21/2019 14:20

    Noooooooo, it is not SAFE

  • Imad K.
    07/22/2019 07:08

    This is just shit American doesn't want Russian success in technology 😅

  • Brut
    07/22/2019 13:18

    Babies can't consent to what their parents post on the 'Gram — that's why this mom wants to talk about children's privacy and their digital footprint. 👶�27