Google took a picture of my face

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Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:25 pm

I just signed into youtube to try and post a comment and to my surprise a picture of my face came up. This is creepy. How the heck did google get my picture? I have a gmail account but I never uploaded my photo or used google+. The picture is a few years old. I think I used it with MSN, probably no later than 2010. My hotmail profile has no picture, so I don't know exactly how google knew to take my MSN picture or how long ago google took it. I don't like it at all. I can't even see a way to get rid of it (although after I posted my comment on youtube, my picture was not there next to it). Now I want to close down all my accounts and start again with anonymous names, logins and passwords for each. I wish I never signed up to facebook, that was a mistake.

Anyone else get spooked like this before?
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:44 pm

Chances are you linked your MSN account to your Gmail, and it imported your picture. I'm not so sure what's creepy about that.
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:50 pm

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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 6:15 am

If you've ever linked your Google account to other social media accounts that have your picture it's possible they got it that way.
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 1:26 pm

Duck wrote:Anyone else get spooked like this before?

"Spooked"? No, I have no irrational fear towards anything internet-related (including DRM, Origin, Steam and other stuff) and I know the simple rule that you should never upload/share the photos to ANYWHERE or ANYONE (including your friends/relatives) on internet if you don't want EVERYONE to be able to see them at some point. This is why the only photos I use as my "avatars" for all social networks and forums are random pictures/photos of cats or game/movie characters :wink:

Annoyed? Yes, it was certainly annoying when, for example, my Nokia Lumia 920 put random photos next to most contacts after I imported them from my iPhone... It was actually pretty amusing - for example I have a contact entry for my local Mercedes salesperson using his full name, and that person is, well, a white-skinned, but the "clever" Microsoft's software somehow found a photo of some random "dark-skinned" person of different ethnicity and put it as a contact photo for him...
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 1:38 pm

Ubuntu Linux startled me when I was installing it on an old laptop a while back. I had previously installed it mostly on desktops and VMs, and had gotten accustomed to just clicking through the installer screens. Well, apparently if it detects a webcam on the system, one of those screens is a "May I take your picture to use as your icon on the login screen?" question. Weirded me out a little, but only because I wasn't expecting it. Now I know to watch for that whenever I install it on laptops with built-in webcams!
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:28 pm

just brew it! wrote: Well, apparently if it detects a webcam on the system, one of those screens is a "May I take your picture to use as your icon on the login screen?" question. Weirded me out a little, but only because I wasn't expecting it. Now I know to watch for that whenever I install it on laptops with built-in webcams!


All of our work laptops have a front facing video camera. I got made fun of by a few of my co-workers for taping a piece of paper over it till one day a guy from IT is troubleshooting my neighbors computer, looks over at my laptop and says "I've done the same thing".

Now if only I could do something about those rumored keyloggers they have on our systems...
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 6:37 pm

just brew it! wrote:If you've ever linked your Google account to other social media accounts that have your picture it's possible they got it that way.

The only thing I can think of was that I told Google what my Hotmail email address is for Gmail password recovery purposes. Then Google tapped into the MSN messenger network and grabbed the picture used by that account. I think I am more annoyed that they did it without my permission.

Taping over the webcam only looks paranoid to people that haven't been 'spooked' ;), or people that are oblivious to being hacked and spied on...
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:47 pm

Duck wrote:The only thing I can think of was that I told Google what my Hotmail email address is for Gmail password recovery purposes. Then Google tapped into the MSN messenger network and grabbed the picture used by that account. I think I am more annoyed that they did it without my permission.

...and here's where you enter the Twilight Zone. Is it in fact the same picture? If so, carefully read the TOS for both services. You may find a clause in there somewhere that implicitly gives permission for this sort of thing.

I'm not trying to defend the practice. Just saying that you may have accidentally given permission without realizing it, by clicking through a page of legalese at some point. And this is why -- in the current age of "everything is connected" and "social media" -- it isn't necessarily safe to just click through EULAs without reading them.
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Re: Google took a picture of my face

Postposted on Fri Nov 01, 2013 7:02 am

Duck wrote:The only thing I can think of was that I told Google what my Hotmail email address is for Gmail password recovery purposes. Then Google tapped into the MSN messenger network and grabbed the picture used by that account. I think I am more annoyed that they did it without my permission.
I suspect what has happened is that one of your friends uses Gmail and has uploaded a picture of you to their contacts list, along with your email address. When you log into YouTube, it pulled your email address, looked up if it had any picture associated with that address and then inserted it. No need to go to any competing network.
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