Facebook recently unveiled its first Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses. These glasses are the company’s first mass-produced wearable product and are sold on a large scale.
The new glasses can take photos and videos in up to 30 seconds. It relies on two cameras, each with a 5-megapixel resolution. Whereas, it allows sharing the captured content directly through Facebook, or transferring it to the phone and disposing of it as desired by the user.
The glasses provide a set of microphones to capture the sound, in addition, they come with two headphones, allowing the user to listen to music while wearing them.
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Facebook glasses and privacy risks
The glasses come in cooperation with the Rey-Ban company, and as the name of the product and most of the ads show, the Rey-Ban brand is ahead even before Facebook.
The Rey-Ban brand is owned by Luxottica, the eyewear monopoly. While it comes at $299. It is a price that some may see appropriate, and others consider it high for glasses.
Facebook markets its glasses as an ideal product to “keep memories”. In general, Facebook is under a lot of criticism regarding security and privacy. As described by some journalists, Facebook considers the user as its main product, and benefits from his information and data, even personal ones.
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Facebook already knows a lot about each user. This is something that appears even in a small way within the “Memories” feature. Through which the application shows you your posts and photos that you have published on the platform previously.
Ray-Ban Stories can play an important role in the metaverse field. Especially with the company’s great interest in this field. The company may also use this glasses to sense the extent of users’ interest in smart glasses in general, before it begins developing virtual reality glasses based on its Oculus brand.
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Returning to talking about the security and privacy risks of Facebook smart glasses, we will find that they are indeed many. As any user who wears glasses will be able, with a click of a button, to take quick pictures or short videos of anything that falls in front of his eyes.
Here, any of us can imagine a wide range of scenarios that are dangerous for millions of people. The wearer can take pictures in private places such as the locker rooms of a gym, or take a short video of someone using an ATM to find out their PIN number.
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The danger of the glasses to the user and others
The company supplied its smart glasses pointer LED lights up when taking photos and videos. But without a doubt, any user, even if he is not a professional, can hide this indicator, and the risk increases when using this product by programmers or people who are able to deal with smart devices. Where they can modify the operating system built into it.
The glasses can be controlled by voice commands. This feature in itself allows the user to take a picture just by moving his lips.
This means that those around him will not even notice that the user has touched his smart glasses. Indeed, Katie Notopoulos of BuzzFeed News managed to completely dim the LED indicator when using her glasses.
And in an experiment to use glasses I passed WSJ journalist Joanna Stern took pictures of more than twenty people without anyone even noticing.
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Thus, the glasses pose a great danger to anyone who passes in front of them, not to mention the danger they pose to the user himself, who collects a huge amount of information every minute.