Facebook recently announced that it is testing a feature that will help prevent others from being able to impersonate user accounts. The new feature is currently being tested, and will send out automatic alerts if it detects that testing another user is falsely claiming to be another user by using their name and photo. The user would then be prompted to identify whether or not it’s truly an imposter account. Facebook says that the feature is already live in about 75% of the world and will expand even further in the near future.
“We heard feedback prior to the roundtables and also at the roundtables that this was a point of concern for women,” Davis told Mashable. “And it’s a real point of concern for some women in certain regions of the world where it [impersonation] may have certain cultural or social ramifications.”
People impersonate other users for various reasons. In some cases, it would allow a user to catfish others into believing they are someone else. This could lead to exploiting others for money, or unlocking personal details about a user to steal their identity. After all, most credit cards do ask for a mother’s maiden name as a form of identifier.
Along with this new feature, Facebook is also testing two new safety features: enabling users to report nonconsensual images and a photo scan feature. This feature would allow a user not only to report an inappropriate photo on Facebook but allow the additional option of identifying themselves in the photo. Doing as such will surface connections to care groups for victims of social media abuse and support for legal alternatives, along with the rectification from the Facebook’s team on reporting profile violations. The photo checkup is meant to bridge that gap by walking users through a step-by-step review process of the privacy settings for their photos. Currently, this tool is live in India, as well as other countries in South America, Africa, and southeast Asia.
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