Facebook is giving away its technology to fight child porn and regain user trust

Advertisement
Facebook is giving away its technology to fight child porn and regain user trust

  • Facebook is giving away its photo and video matching technology to help other developers identify harmful content.
  • Both technologies are available for free on GitHub.
  • The impetus to make the technology open source is to fight the increasing problem of child porn online.
Facebook is giving away its photo and video matching technology on GitHub so that it can be used to identify harmful content. This can help the social media giant earn back some of the brownie points that its lost over the past year.

The two technologies, which are now opensource, can detect identical or nearly identical photos and videos, respectively.

The company claims that the software can help smaller developers, non-profit groups and industry partners to identify abusive content like child exploitation, terrorist propaganda and graphic violence.
Advertisement

"For those who already use their own or other content matching technology, these technologies are another layer of defence and allow hash-sharing systems to talk to each other, making the systems that much more powerful," shared Antigone Davis, Global Head of Safety in a statement on Thursday.

Fighting child exploitation on social media

The explosion of social media has also resulted in an increase in child pornography. Earlier this year in India, the popular video sharing app, TikTok, was banned by a local court for ' encouraging' child pornography.

Advertisement

An investigation by AntiToxin Technologies, a Israeli tech firm, also revealed that there are WhatsApp groups and users circulating childpornography globally, hiding behind the app's encryption.

Regaining user trust

Facebook hasn't had the easiest time in the market since the Cambridge Analytica scandal came to light last year. User trust was breached when a whistleblower revealed that the political consulting firm had harvested data from millions of Facebook profiles for advertising.


Advertisement
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) leveled a $5 billion settlement against the social networking giant last month after concluding their investigation into the matter.

More recently, Facebook ' unintentionally uploaded' the email contacts of 1.5 million new Facebook users since 2016. The company however claims that they have since deleted the information.

A safer internet

Building on Microsoft's generous contribution of PhotoDNA to fight child exploitation 10 years ago and the more recent launch of Google "Content Safety API", the Facebook's announcement is part of an industry-wide commitment to building a safer internet.
Advertisement

Known as 'PDQ' and 'TMK+PDQF', these technologies are part of a suite of tools used at Facebook to detect harmful content.

The technologies create an efficient way to store files as short digital hashes that can determine whether two files are the same or similar, even without the original image or video.

Hashes can also be more easily shared with other companies and non-profit organisations, said Facebook.
Advertisement

(with IANS inputs)

See also:
Facebook will now pay you if you give access to your phone's data

Facebook has confirmed that Libra isn't coming to India as government shies away from 'private' cryptocurrencies
Advertisement

Facebook and Cognizant get smeared by whistleblowers who exposed an office of horrors with stories of death, theft and dirt
{{}}