It’s kind of scary, but a Polish facial recognition website called PimEyes lets you find pictures of anyone you want. However, you’d first need one picture of the person first—which you could probably get through Facebook or Google Images easily anyway.
By uploading a picture of a person’s face into PimEyes, you will find more images of them from publicly accessible websites like Tumblr, YouTube, WordPress blogs, and news outlets. I tried adding a picture of myself into it and it was scary how fast it brought up other pictures of me… along with pictures of people who vaguely looked like me.
As my face is often plastered in my features here on this website, I wasn’t too surprised to find them here. They weren’t really social media-based pictures either, as they are only from publicly accessible sites like I said previously. But there were also pictures of other people who looked a little like me—and some were (disturbingly) also from ‘adult content’.
PimEyes’ service is similar to Clearview AI, which is currently being used by police and law enforcement agencies. Unlike PimEyes, Clearview AI additionally looks through images on social media.
PimEyes also only lets you click through to the website they got the images from if you pay USD9.99 (RM42.60). The paid access to the website address where the face appears however will only be available for 24 hours. After that, you’d need to pay another USD9.99.
The paid service also allows up to 25 saved alerts, meaning one person could be alerted to newly uploaded images of up to 25 people across the internet. PimEyes has also opened up its service for developers to search its database, with pricing for up to 100 million searches per month.
“You could just upload a photo of a movie star you like, or your ex, and then find 10 girls who look similar to her and send them messages,” said PimEyes cofounder Alexander Kabakov. Yeesh.
PimEyes markets itself as “a solution for customers worried about where their photos appear online”. These types of facial recognition search sites aren’t new. Russian tech company NtechLab launched FindFace in 2016. Founders described it as a way to find women a person wanted to date.