Photo Tagging: Another Way to Violate Privacy

If you are a Facebook user then you have probably been tagged in a photo that you would prefer not to be tagged in – and you might have even removed a tag from one of those photos. But did you know that any tagged photo could pose a potential privacy risk?

Carnegie Mellon University researchers have proven that it is possible to data mine social networks using currently available facial recognition software, cloud access and social networking data.

In a series of three real-world trials, Professor Alessandro Acquisti and colleagues used such a system with an augmented reality smartphone app to successfully identify online daters (who were using pseudonyms) and students around campus through the individual’s Facebook information.

What does this mean? Until now, it has been fairly easy to maintain a distinction between online and offline identity. Now that privacy is becoming more of an ideal than a reality.