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Voilà AI Artist app has taken over social media by providing users with AI-powered photo filters. But what happens to those images once they are uploaded to the web?
The app features four different options, including 2D or 3D animation, Renaissance and caricatures.
Users can upload or take a photo, choose a mode, and then save the photo or upload it to social media. Voilà also has a feature that specifically edits celebrity photos and offers a subscription service at $3 on iOS and $2 on Android per week, eliminating ads.
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Voila author and user Jill Baguchinsky said she first downloaded the app after seeing a friend’s Facebook post with filters.
“Who knows where some of these pictures might end up? I’m sticking to using pictures I already own on the Internet because those pictures really exist either way,” Baguchinsky said in an email to USA TODAY. “I would never upload anything personal or private to an app like this.”
With apps like Voilà, there are always some privacy concerns to consider, says Steve Povolny, head of advanced threat research and principal engineer at McAfee.
“I think most people now understand that your face is a completely different kind of identity that we weren’t used to protecting in the past,” Povolny said. “And in many respects, it holds at least as much, if not more, information than a lot of the public information you actually do share.”
Povolny also noted that while people usually know the risks associated with using applications that collect data, especially photos, they are not always aware of the full implications of how that data will be used in the future.
Over the past few years, Povolny noted, people have become more accustomed to the collection and use of their data by companies.
“Five to 10 years ago, you probably couldn’t really imagine a blanket statement saying, ‘Yes, we collect your data, and we’ll do what we want with it, whenever we want’,” Povolny said. . “That wasn’t really socially acceptable, it might at least surprise you, and now it’s the status quo.”
Voila says it deletes after 24 to 48 hours. However, there is no public verification of this.
But for Destiny Velez, a data analyst and user of the Voilà app, the concerns are minimal.
Filiz downloaded the app after seeing a co-worker use it and has since shared it with others in her family.
She noted that while other apps like Snapchat have similar filters, they aren’t as sophisticated. Velez said she plans to continue using the app, especially if more filters are added.
With artificial intelligence and technology improving going forward, Povolni warns that users will need to be more careful about what apps they use and what they post on social media.
“We really need to be aware of what the future is,” Povolny said. “There are huge efforts to collect data, and we don’t really know how it will be used in the future.”