US Senator asks FBI to investigate FaceApp

New York State Senior Senator Chuck Schumer called on the FBI and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate FaceApp, which has gone viral.

Recalling, FaceApp is a product of Russian developers, in connection with which Schumer is concerned about national security issues.

“The FaceApp app requires full access to personal photos and data. This state of affairs creates risks to national security and privacy of millions US citizens”, – says Chuck Schumer in his letter to FBI director Christopher Ray.

The National Committee of the US Democratic Party (DNC) also sent out a presidential candidates a warning about the dangers of using FaceApp, noting that the application has Russian origin.

Bob Lord
Bob Lord

According to Reuters the head of security at DNC, Bob Lord, demanded that any employee who installed FaceApp remove it immediately.

Researchers in the field of cyber security have questions to developers regarding the degree of confidentiality and security of user data.

The first concerned is about the background upload of your photos to the developer’s cloud. Guardian App CEO Will Strefech and researcher Baptiste Robert analyzed the application and concluded that there is no evidence of background uploading of user photos.

Read also: 440 million Android users installed applications with an aggressive advertising plugin
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The second question arose because of the possibility to select a photo on the device, without first providing the application with appropriate access.

Mashable employee Carissa Bell reported this.

“Doesn’t you need access to a photo for this?” Bell writes, sticking a video, which demonstrates a controversial moment.

In fact, Apple back in iOS 11 gave apps the ability to upload one photo without having to request access to the entire gallery. This is useful when loading an avatar.

Finally, the last question relates to uploading processed photos to the cloud. There are two problems here – firstly, FaceApp does not even warn user that his photos are uploaded to a third-party cloud, and secondly, it is not clear whether the developers leave the photo or delete it immediately after processing.

FaceApp representatives have not yet answered these questions.

Experts recommend using the application with caution. What exactly should be done before using it – delete all screenshots with personal or billing data.
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Daniel Zimmermann

Daniel Zimmermann has been writing on security and malware subjects for many years and has been working in the security industry for over 10 years. Daniel was educated at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany and currently lives in New York.

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