Feeds

Creepy photo-tagging tech slotted into Google+

'Find my face' feature lands

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Eric Schmidt may have been creeped out by the idea of using huge facial databases to identify individuals online, but that hasn't stopped Google from debuting its own version of the technology.

Google+, Mountain View's own take on social networking, is now loaded with a photo-tagging and "find my face" feature that punters must opt-in to use.

By default, the Chocolate Factory has switched off the "find my face in photos and prompt people I know to tag me" option, however, as soon as a user clicks on a photograph Google+ politely asks that individual to consider enabling the feature.

It also points out the user has total control over the "find my face" option.

In July, Google bought facial recognition outfit pittpatt, at which point it was clear that the company would eventually add a photo-tagging feature to Google+.

However, it's a move that appears to fly in the, er, face of Google chairman Schmidt, who in May this year indicated that the world's largest ad broker had no intention whatsoever of using such creepy tech in the firm's products.

But then, we suppose, seven months is a long time in the online world. Google has been closely watching the fallout from Facebook's botched attempt at stealthily folding facial recognition tech into its users' accounts. And it now better understands the softly softly catchy monkey approach is better than an iron fist when it comes to debuting features in Google+.

The company spectacularly failed to win over privacy advocates when it rolled out the nearly defunct Buzz, which was bolted onto Gmail accounts without first asking for permission from that particular userbase.

This year has proved extremely embarrassing for both Facebook and Google when it comes to butter-fingered handling of data online. The pair, now humiliatingly subjected to bi-annual privacy audits for the next 20 years in the US, are attempting to regain trust from their respective users.

It's unlikely that this means Facebook or Google will do less evil with the data they farm come 2012. But it does mean the companies are much more under the spotlight when it comes to herding identities on the interwebulator.

Now it's a question of being a little more creative with how to best use the tech stored in their gun rooms. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.