Comments: Popular apps turning people into cartoon avatars: All fun and no risk?

Comments: Popular apps turning people into cartoon avatars: All fun and no risk?

Comments by: Yaniv Balmas, Head of Cyber Research at Check Point Software Technologies

Most users likely assume that the processing of Voila app is done locally on their phone. This is not the case. A non-obvious fact here is that the company sends face pictures to its servers for processing.

When a face photo is sent to the company’s server, the app includes unique installation IDs that were generated by Google Play. So each photo is packaged up with user identification details. While this fact is mentioned in the company’s privacy policy, the possibility for misuse of the data opens up – either by the company itself or by a 3rd party.

For example, if the company is hacked, the attackers could potentially gather a large data base of all faces of application users. We have no way of telling if the company is doing anything illegal or malicious, but I do think it’s important for new users to be aware of the inherent risks in sending content to servers for processing.

The risk being pictures of your or your loved ones face in malicious hands, in the event of a data breach or cyber attack.

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