In an effort to combat the 21st century problem of revenge porn, Facebook is asking users to send in their own nude photos.
It’s an experimental thing.
The idea is that people who have shared intimate images online — and who now are nervous about it or are already being victimized — can have those images “hashed” so they can’t be uploaded anymore on Facebook, Messenger or Instagram.
But that means sending those images to yourself via Messenger and trusting Facebook. The social media behemoth says it will store those images only for a short time before deleting them, according to a report in The Guardian.
Facebook is testing the system in Australia and plans to extend it to the U.S., the United Kingdom and Canada, according to USA Today.
Many applaud the initiative, but some are skeptical. Someone at Facebook needs to see your intimate photos to determine whether they are actually objectionable.
“Facebook’s system still requires you to put a ton of trust in an unknown Facebook employee or contractor,” said Gizmodo, “and not mind that they are looking at photos you’d otherwise not want to be seen.”
But CNN reports that Alex Stamos, Facebook’s chief security officer, said the social media platform is trying to find a balance against a very real problem.
“We are not asking random people to submit their nudes,” Stamos said. “This is a test to provide some option to victims to take back control.”
The Guardian cites a 2016 report that about 4 percent of U.S. internet users have been victims of revenge porn.