Facebook files a patent to know, who you live with!
Facebook has submitted a patent application for technology that would predict who your family and other household members are. Your uploaded images , your household stuff as per the uploaded images and based on images and captions, as well as your device information, like shared IP addresses, facebook will target ads accordingly. The application titled “Predicting household demographics based on image data,” was originally filed May 10, 2017, and made public today.
Facebook can already analyze lots of information to tell who’s in the same household. It checks the relationships people list on their profiles, whether people list the same last names or locations, and shared life events or event check-ins, among other things. The system described in the new patent would involve an even more sophisticated level of data mining.
The patent suggests that the company is interested in exploring the technology, which is intended to help Facebook target advertising more effectively. A Facebook spokesperson said, “We often seek patents for technology we never implement, and patents should not be taken as an indication of future plans.”
Facebook submitted the application before this year’s security and privacy scandals – Cambridge Analytica, a massive hack, and backlash against its recent hardware product . The patent’s publication comes at time when the social media giant is in a phase of loosing trust by it’s users. Users’ data is all that matters to hackers and then selling that data to earn enormous amount. Facebook seems doing making things more complicated for their audience if they implement this patent.
How will this patent work ?
The system Facebook proposes would use facial recognition and learning models trained to understand text. This will help Facebook better understand whom you live with and interact with most. The technology described in the patent looks for clues in your profile pictures. And it may access your profile pictures on Facebook, Instagram, as well as photos of you that you or your friends post.
It would note the people identified in a photo, and how frequently the people are included in your pictures. Then, it would assess information from comments on the photos, captions, or tags (#family, #mom, #kids). this will indicate whether someone is a husband, daughter, cousin, etc. to predict what your family/household actually looks like.
Facebook’s prediction models would also analyze “messaging history, past tagging history and web browsing history”.It will observe if multiple people share IP addresses (a unique identifier for every internet network). For Eg. if you have a Wifi at home and every member of the family access internet from it. Facebook’s prediction model will assume you as a family. It will also access the “number of days for which a shared internet was used” to get more accurate data.
In one specific example, the model looked at an image a user posted with two females tagged. “#my_boss_at_home,” and another image with a young girl marked “my angel”. Facebook predicted that there were three people in the household, including the male user, and two females, “who are likely the male user’s wife and daughter.”
And due to above approach , guess what can happen :
FACEBOOK COULD GUESS HOW MANY KIDS YOU HAVE EVEN IF THEY’RE NOT ON FACEBOOK.
At one side we users need privacy and at the other side Facebook will get all this information. Probably a kid’s Uncle or Aunt may not know about it but Facebook will surely know 😛
The social media giant didn’t specify exactly what kind of demographic information its proposed system would predict.as per above mentioned study , it will surely get the number of people in a household, but its data policy specifies that demographics could include gender and age.
The application makes clear that the information is intended to help Facebook target advertising more effectively.
According to present data collection that Facebook does, here is what they want to say
“Existing solutions of content delivery to a target household are not effective. Without such knowledge of a user’s household features, most of the content items that are sent to the user are poorly tailored to the user and are likely ignored by the user.”
Facebook collects a lot of data about you to feed its algorithms. Those algorithms serve you content on your news feed and ads it thinks you’ll be most likely to click on. Considering recent reports about Facebook’s struggles to protect the massive amounts of personal data it has collected from its users, this revelation is surely going to wobble users’ trust on Facebook.