For some Facebook users, I guess it’s a constant battle between wanting to share things like photos with the community and being a bit afraid of losing control of those photos to the web at large. If you’re looking for a new way to make your public photos a little more private, McAfee may be able to help.
They’ve just announced the free public beta stage of McAfee Social Protection, a Facebook app/browser plug-in combo that allows Facebook users to safeguard their photos from being accessed and shared by the wrong people.
With the app, users can select which friends they want to give access to their photos. Photos will look blurry to everyone not on the list. Even when they get access to your photos, friends still won’t be able to share, copy, print, or take screencaps. The screen capture mechanism with record a blank page, according to McAfee.
The app also disables the save and download feature, displaying a padlock icon over the picture when a user scrolls over it. This unique lock feature is possible because when users upload protected photos through the app, those files go onto McAfee, rather than Facebook servers.
“As consumers continue to share more of their lives online through the photos they post to Facebook, they become increasingly vulnerable to the privacy pitfalls associated with not being able to fully control where their photos end up,” said Brian Foster, senior vice president of consumer product management for McAfee. “McAfee Social Protection helps to further underscore our commitment to safeguarding consumer’s safety, data and identities online.”
McAfee has also built in a clever bit of self-promotion into the app. Users can also make it so that selected friends can only access their photos once they have also downloaded the Social Protection app.
McAfee Social Protection is only available on PCs running IE 8+ or Firefox 8+ (wat?). So if you’re a Mac user, Chrome user, Safari User, etc., you’re out of luck.