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Facebook to Introduce New Tools to Protect Profile Pictures of Indian Women

These tools have been developed in partnership with multiple companies and Indian Safety Organizations that include Centre for Social Research, Breakthrough, Learning Links Foundation, and Youth Ki Awaaz

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Facebook user interface. Pixabay
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  • It will be in the control of the women as to who can download and share their profile pictures that include their faces
  • Depending on the experience in India, Facebook has plans to introduce this feature to other countries as well
  • According to reports- as per plans, wherever possible, Facebook would also prevent users from taking a screenshot of someone’s profile picture

June 25, 2016: Facebook has recently announced that it is going to introduce new tools and techniques to help the Indian women possess more control over the privacy regarding their profile photos, IANS reported. It will be in the control of the women as to who can download and share their photos that include their faces. This announcement brings the initiative of empowerment of the Indian women, one step further.

Aarati Soman, Product Manager at Facebook, stated in a post on Wednesday, “In our research with people and safety organization in India, we have heard that some women choose not to share profile pictures that include their faces anywhere on the internet because they are concerned about what may happen to their photos,” India TV News reports.

ALSO READ: Ten Hilarious Facebook Memes Cover Photos that will Make You Laugh Out Loud

Depending on the experience in India, Facebook has plans to introduce this feature to other countries as well. Research has shown that adding designs to profile pictures prevents misuse. According to the reports, the social media giant is also gearing up to help people with that feature.

These tools are developed to provide people with more safety online and help them exercise more control on the privacy issues. These tools have been developed in partnership with multiple companies and Indian Safety Organizations that include Centre for Social Research, Breakthrough, Learning Links Foundation, and Youth Ki Awaaz.

Since now, Indian users would notice a guide to include an optional profile picture guard while setting a profile picture.

Soman said further, “Other people will no longer be able to download, share or send your profile picture in a message on Facebook. People you are not friends with on Facebook won’t be able to tag anyone, including themselves, in your profile picture,” India TV News reported.

As per plans, wherever possible, Facebook would also prevent users from taking a screenshot of someone’s profile picture. Presently, this feature is available in androids only. Displaying a blue border and a shield around one’s profile picture as a cue to preventing misuse, is going to be introduced soon.

The company also partnered with an illustrator Jessica Singh, who got inspired from traditional Indian designs of textile including ‘Kantha’ and ‘Bandhni’ and created designs for users to include in their profile pictures.

Soman Says, “Based on preliminary tests, we’ve learned that when someone adds an extra design layer to their profile picture, other people are at least 75 per cent less likely to copy that picture” Soman said. She also added that one can report to Facebook if someone suspects that the profile picture with safeguard designs, is being misused in any way; and then that design can be used to determine whether that should be eliminated from the community.

– by Antara Kumar of NewsGram. Twitter: @ElaanaC
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Twitter Gets Investigated By Ireland Over Data Collection

Both Facebook and Twitter have faced lawsuits for collecting data on links shared in private messages

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Twitter on a smartphone device. VOA

 Twitter is reportedly facing an investigation by privacy regulators in Ireland over data collection in its link-shortening system, the media reported.

Privacy regulators in Ireland have launched an investigation into exactly how much data Twitter collects from t.co, its URL-shortening system, The Verge reported late on Saturday.

The investigation stems from a request made by UK professor Michael Veale under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a comprehensive European privacy law under which EU citizens have a right to request any data collected on them from a given company.

Facebook, Twitter
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, left, accompanied by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey are sworn in before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on ‘Foreign Influence Operations and Their Use of Social Media Platforms’ on Capitol Hill. VOA

But when Veale made that request to Twitter, the company claimed it had no data from its link-shortening service. The professor was sceptical, and wrote to the relevant privacy regulator to see if Twitter was holding back some of his data.

Now, that investigation seems to be underway. The investigation, first reported by Fortune, is confirmed in a letter obtained by The Verge, sent to Veale by the office of the Irish Data Privacy Commissioner, the report said.

Initially designed as a way to save characters in the limited space of a tweet, link-shortening has also proved to be an effective tool at fighting malware and gathering rudimentary analytics.

Twitter
Twitter Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey testifies before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on foreign influence operations and their use of social media on Capitol Hill. VOA

Those analytics services can also present a significant privacy risk when used in private messages.

Also Read: Facebook Tackles Fake News, Deletes Almost 800 Accounts

Both Facebook and Twitter have faced lawsuits for collecting data on links shared in private messages, although no wrong-doing was conclusively established in either case. (IANS)