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Method to obfuscate unauthorized pictures. Disclosure Number: IPCOM000239545D
Publication Date: 2014-Nov-14
Document File: 4 page(s) / 31K

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


Here is proposed a smart notification method based on a short range communication protocol to authorize or deny to appear in a picture taken from a third part person. As a consequence of a denial the involved person figure is then obfuscated on the final taken picture.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 45% of the total text.

Page 01 of 4

Method to obfuscate unauthorized pictures .

    With the strong diffusion of smartphone provided with powerful cameras, it is very common to take picture anywhere to other persons. While taking a picture, it can happen to include, in the picture itself, an unknown person that was by chance nearby. In those cases, a person can have a lot of picture (owned by unknown persons) including himself without being acknowledged of this. In the era of social networks, this photo can be shared and viewed by a lot of unknown persons and this can further violate his/her privacy.

    Even if some mechanism exists already on social networks to avoid the publishing of photo where a person does not want to appear in, what typically happens is that the person is asked, if tagged inside a photo, to allow to publish his/her associated name to that photo when put on a social network site. In the case the person was not tagged as it was unknown by the photo author, the person will appear in the photo even if he/she does not about it.

    The method disclosed here tries to solve this privacy matter with an automated smart notification method based on short range communication between mobiles like Bluetooth.

    When taking a photo (in the interval required from the camera focus setting
to the effective snapshot taking), the smartphone sends a broadcast notification, using Bluetooth or any other short-range communication channel, to any peer (other mobile device) nearby that listens to this kind of notifications message (leveraging on an opportune protocol).

    When receiving the notification that a photo is being taken nearby, the person can decide if she accepts or not to be (if happens) inside the photo; if he/she accepts, he/she will normally appear in the photo; in the other case, the smartphone that takes the photo will receive a "denial" that will force the device, once the photo has been taken, to obfuscate the person so that he/she will not be recognizable at all on the final photo.

    The process can be fully automated, including a list of "friend" devices from which the person accept photos to be taken, and a default behavior from request from unknown smartphones.

    A further mechanism described later makes sure that, in case of large scale of persons receiving the photo notifications and providing heterogeneous consensus to appear in the photo, in the final photo only the persons who denied to be inside the photo will be obfuscated.


Page 02 of 4

Pre requisites:

    Each person (the photographer and any person nearby, the one that are intended to be included in the photo, and any other person nearby) must be provided with smartphone provided with short range communication apparatus like Bluetooth.

    Description is split between the description of what a person that want to preserve his/her privacy should have on his smartphone, and the description of the logic inside the application that takes the photo through the smartphone camera of the photographer.

Smartphone of a p...