Profile pictures on Facebook were implemented to make it easy for people that know you to identify you on the network. For some reason, Facebook made it possible to download someone’s profile picture but now they are changing that policy.
Facebook is now testing new tools in India that will give users in the country more control over who can download and share their profile pictures. Apparently they got feed back that people want more control over their profile pictures and the company has been working over the past year to come up with a solution.
The company did some research among safety organizations in India where they found out that some women chose not to share their profile pictures since they were concerned about what may happen to their photos. The tools that the company came up with were developed in partnership with Indian safety organizations.
When a user decides to add the profile picture guard:
- Facebook will show a blue border and a shield around your profile picture to show that it is being protected.
- Other people wont be able to download, share or send your profile picture in a message on Facebook.
- Strangers won’t be able to tag themselves in your profile picture
- Facebook will prevent people from taking a screenshot of your profile picture. This is currently available only on Android devices.
In addition to that, they are adding ways to make their profile pictures more interesting by adding designs to them, which according to their research makes it helpful in “deterring misuse.” According to their research, adding an extra layer makes people 75% less likely to copy it.
Facebook says based from what they will learn from their experience in India, they hope to expand to other countries soon.