New Technology: Cool deals or invasion of privacy?

Published On: Oct 17 2012 12:22:36 PM EDT
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Many of you probably already use apps like FourSquare or Yelp to get deals when you "check-in" on your smart phone. Now, one company is trying to take instant deals a step further, with new face scanning technology that could recognize you when you walk into a store or a restaurant.

It's called Facedeals. Here's how it works. When users of the app walk into a store, a camera scans their face. Then, facial recognition software matches the scan with the person's Facebook profile, and a coupon can be sent to that person's smartphone based on their online interests.

The found of the company that's working on the new app says it's just taking things to the next level. "People are checking in using Facebook and FourSquare already. We're just making it more intuitive for them to check in," said Tim McMullen, CEO of Red Pepper.

Security Measures Included

McMullen also says the new platform is being developed with your security in mind. He says the app includes a double "opt in" system, which means you must confirm your consent multiple times to allow the face scanning. Plus, you must agree to give the app access to your Facebook profile.

As you can imagine, some people found the idea a little intrusive, while others says it's part of the new social media world we live in.

"That's what Facebook is for. It's for people to know. It's the social network. So, I've got it there for a reason. Evidently I've got it there for people to know. I think I would enjoy that very much," said Deez Warren of Cleveland.

"It's not something I'd opt into and even if I were to, it's not something I'd want to get out of the blue. It's an invasion of privacy more so than anything else," said Michael Kim of London, who took the opposing view.

The project is not affiliated with Facebook. Red Pepper is still testing the product and is seeking funding before the app will be available to the public.