A profile picture is an important asset of your Facebook profile. It helps users easily find people they are looking for, and thus make new connections. However, not everyone feels safe to add a profile picture. In fact, according to research conducted by Facebook, the social media giant found that women avoid sharing profile pictures showing their face due to safety concerns. To combat this. Facebook has introduced a new profile picture protection tool for its users in India.
The profile picture guard feature aims to stop people from sharing or misusing your photos. Once activated, the system will ensure that other users can t download and share your profile pictures. The tool will also ensure that strangers don t tag themselves in your photos. In the initial phase, the feature is only rolling out to Android smartphone users.
The tool has been developed in partnership with safety organizations such as Learning Links Foundation and Centre for Social Research in New Delhi. We are piloting new tools that give people in India more control over who can download and share their profile pictures. In addition, we are exploring ways people can more easily add designs to profile pictures, which our research has shown helpful in deterring misuse. Based on what we learn from our experience in India, we hope to expand to other countries soon, Aarati Soman, Product Manager at Facebook, said in a blog post. ALSO READ: How to run multiple WhatsApp, Facebook accounts on your Android smartphone
How to use Facebook profile picture guard
There are two ways to enable Facebook privacy guard on your profile. To begin with, update your Facebook app to the latest version. Once that is done, refresh your News Feed and as you scroll through, you will be able to the see the prompt to Help protect your profile picture.
Next, tap on Turn on Profile Picture Guard where you will see the features of the new feature. Tap on next after which you will see your profile picture guarded with a blue line and a shield icon. Tap on save and now when you check your profile, you will be able to see shield icon, meaning your profile is guarded. Alternatively, you can also tap on your profile picture and and scroll down to the option that reads turn on profile picture guard. ALSO READ: Is AI the perfect solution to help Facebook counter terrorism and extremism?
Besides this, Facebook also lets you add design to your profile picture, which is more like adding watermark to your photo. Facebook feels it discourages people from copying your photo. “Based on preliminary tests, we’ve learned that when someone adds an extra design layer to their profile picture, other people are at least 75 percent less likely to copy that picture,” said Soman.
To deactivate the privacy guard feature, head over to your profile on Facebook app, tap on your profile photo, and scroll down to the option that says turn off profile picture guard.
Facebook, on its blog mentioned, Where possible, we ll prevent others from taking a screenshot of your profile picture on Facebook, which is currently available only on Android devices. However, when I tried taking a screenshot, it did work, which also defeats the purpose of having the privacy guard enabled in the first place. ALSO READ: Facebook now lets you add GIFs to comments
But given the fact that the update is just rolling out, we will have to wait and see if this persists. Because the process of taking screenshots is both software and hardware driven, an option like Snapchat where users gets notified when someone tries to take a screenshot could do the trick.