News 31 October 2017
Author: Marisa Lee

Your iPhone’s image recognition is looking at your nudes

Author Marisa Lee
31 October 2017

Apple is making a special folder of your nudes on your phone and you don’t even know it.

Okay, that’s not strictly true, but the below viral tweet threw a lot of women into a frenzy once they discovered something new about the iPhone’s image recognition.

A lot of women who searched the term reported that the folder showed some of their most intimate pictures, including some nudes, naked, or of them having sex, but it’s not actually the dirty invasion of privacy it sounds like it is.

It turns out Apple actually forms hundreds of these categories in the Photos app; if you search “dogs” or “shoes” for example (who knew Photos had a search feature though??), your phone’s recognition software will locate all matching photos in your camera roll. Last year they introduced the feature that goes through your pictures and tries to identify what’s in them, using machine learning technologies. 

It’s pretty weird that Apple decided to include a search for “brasserie” when it doesn’t have any other underwear categories, but the search will locate anything that looks like straps, bringing up nudes and other skin-bearing pictures.

On the plus side however, Apple doesn’t look at these photos or store information that is in them, unlike similar recognition tools by Google and Facebook. The search is only really an issue if someone happens to have your phone and wants to creep on your nudes.