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What's privacy worth? 'Facedeals' app to scan your face in exchange for discounts


It's not a secret: Just a quick stroll through your city will allow a couple of cameras to catch your face. That ATM, that traffic light, that grocery store entrance — video-surveillance happens everywhere. But is that reality enough to make you happily use an app which scans your face in exchange for discount codes?

Anna Brading of Sopho's security blog isn't so sure that it should be. "[This arrangement] worries me," she writes. "How securely will the data be stored? Can [a company] sell on the data they've collected? What if the data gets stolen?"

Brading's got her mind on Facedeals, a camera system which could one day make its way into your favorite haunts. This system scans your face as you enter a premises, checks you into the location on Facebook, and sends you a text message with a discount code (which is specifically tailored to you based on what you like on Facebook).

These things won't happen unless you've installed and authorized the corresponding Facedeals app, mind you. The Facedeals app learns how you look based on your tagged Facebook photos and uses that information to identify you whenever you enter a location with a Facedeals camera system.

Now, whether you're excited to see Facedeals in your local stores or already planning to avoid any location with such a system, you can relax for a while.

According to the folks of Redpepper, the advertising agency behind the whole setup, they're still "finalizing testing and seeking funding for Facedeals." No word as to how the agency would deal with the wrath of Facebook, which might not be all that happy about the Facedeals name or logo.

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