Company creates self-deleting photos tool for social network sites

We've all heard the stories about someone posting a risque picture on Facebook, then years later applying for a job and having the employer not offer the job partially because of that picture. While the practice may technically not meet legal requirements, first impressions are everything and can seriously affect your potential employment.

Yahoo News is reporting that X-Pire, a German company, thinks that they have a solution to this problem: They have created a way to allow users to input an expiration date for their photos before posting them on sites like Facebook and Flickr. The company's website makes it sounds like the service will act as a proxy, encrypting your images and providing a key when viewed. If the expiration date has passed, the service will simply refuse to send the decryption key. X-Pire is planing on charging two euros a month for the photo-expiration tool, and is working on allowing the expiration of other media such as blogs and homepages in the future.

While the concept may sound interesting, it is worth noting that the service has been created to prevent data from living on the internet forever and is not made to prevent wide circulation of inappropriate images. If you post a picture that you don't want the world to see, there's nothing to stop someone from saving a copy and sending it to anyone they want, thus circumventing the X-Pire system.

Given the limitations, it will be interesting to see how popular this service will be.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Facebook allows apps to access user's address and mobile number [Update]

Next Story

BlackBerry Storm 3 details leaked

24 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Don't post questionable images or even better don't use Facebook. Problem solved! Jeez how did people back in the day live without Facebook I wonder !

sweetsam said,
Don't post questionable images or even better don't use Facebook. Problem solved! Jeez how did people back in the day live without Facebook I wonder !

Well this isn't back in the day anymore, now is it.

If I am not mistaken all of the social sites have privacy settings... If people aren't smart enough to enable them how would they be able to use this software on their images?

just a crazy thought. encode image so that people need a code to decode the image and view it or don't freaking post anything stupid online.

If you have the foresight to sign up to this service and utilise it to set an expiration date on a "risque" photo of yourself, you probably have the foresight to save yourself some money, embarrassment and potentially a job by not posting the image in the first place.

Pauleh said,
If you have the foresight to sign up to this service and utilise it to set an expiration date on a "risque" photo of yourself, you probably have the foresight to save yourself some money, embarrassment and potentially a job by not posting the image in the first place.

+1.
If you're dumb enough to do this in the first place then you should suffer the consequences.. But this service won't help the people that this actually affects so seems pretty pointless....

Seems kinda pointless, the problem is when a friend uploads an embarrassing picture of you... not when you upload an embarrassing picture of yourself.

davebM said,
uh.. this is stupid. Print screen is an awesome function

You don't even need that for circumventing this system, although I do agree it's awesome!

GS:lin

thenonhacker said,

Not to mention Mirroring Sites that cache image data.


Mirroring... You mean like archive.org that doesn't work with log-in pages?

GS:mac

*Sigh* people just need to learn to be careful. It's the Internet, and you're posting a representation of yourself online. If you don't want to come across as being a tool, then don't post pictures of you being a tool, and untag yourself from photos where you look like one.

People think the Internet is some parallel universe that doesn't cross in to the real world. The sooner people realise that this isn't the case, the sooner they'll shape up and think about their actions online.

AtriusNY said,
Haven't you ever heard of the thing called alcohol?
Yup, my Facebook photo album has enough photos of me with alcohol to prove it. But if there were a photo of me that I deemed inappropriate, I would untag myself. Thankfully I've not found the need to do this yet.

Untagging yourself doesn't do a whole lot in reality - the picture's still there. And half the problem isn't people uploading pictures of themselves - it's others doing it. And untagging yourself doesn't remove the picture.

No, but untagging yourself removes it from your "photos of me" section. A company looking to hire an employee would look at the employees photos as well as their "photos of me." They're not going to go through the employee's group of friends, looking at all of their photos as well in an attempt to find one of you behaving inappropriately.

Soulsiphon said,
Peeps from that other story that had their junk from facebook shown all around could have used this LOL

Did you forget to read the second last paragraph?