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Facebook asked users for nude photos in an effort to fight 'revenge porn'

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Facebook is asking some users to volunteer their nude images as part of a project aimed at combating so-called “revenge porn,” according to the Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC).

The ABC last week reported that Facebook is partnering with a small Australian government agency to stop intimate or sexual images from getting shared without the subject’s consent.

E-Safety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant said that victims of “image-based abuse” could take action before such photos were posted on Facebook, Instagram or Messenger.

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“We see many scenarios where maybe photos or videos were taken consensually at one point, but there was not any sort of consent to send the images or videos more broadly,” she said on Nov. 2.

“They thought of many different ways about doing this and they came to the conclusion as one of the major technology companies in the world that this was the safest way for users to share the digital footprints,” added Inman Grant, who head’s Office of the E-Safety Commissioner.

“We have a great deal of comfort that they have chose the most secure route … we want to empower people to be able to protect themselves and take action, we don’t want to make them vulnerable.”

Inman Grant said those worried about their images appearing on Facebook or Instagram could contact the E-Safety Commission.

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The agency would then potentially tell users to send the same images to themselves on Messenger.

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Inman Grant added that Facebook would then use technology to “hash” the image, or create a digital fingerprint or link of it.

“It would be like sending yourself your image in an email, but obviously this is a much safer, secure end-to-end way of sending the image without sending it through the ether,” she explained.

“They’re not storing the image, they’re storing the link and using artificial intelligence and other photo-matching technologies,” Inman Grant continued.

“So if somebody tried to upload that same image, which would have the same digital footprint or hash value, it will be prevented from being uploaded.”

The Office of the E-Safety Commissioner said in a statement on Nov. 2 that Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. are also participating in the pilot with Facebook.

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