Facial recognition software is growing both in use and sophistication, which is why security firm AVG has revealed what it refers to as "invisibility glasses."

Utilizing infrared and retro-reflective technology, the glasses are designed to create interference in photographs, interference that reduces the effectiveness of image recognition software.


AVG points to three concerns for privacy. One, an increasing use of smartphone cameras means it's more likely "unsolicited images taken of us may end up online," worries over "Big Data projects such as Google's StreetView," and Facebook's "DeepFace," which AVG warns could give private corporations the ability to "not only recognize us, but also cross-reference our faces" against other online data.

The infrared lights on the glasses are invisible to the human eye, but can be captured by digital cameras. You may be able to see the effect by pointing an IR remote control at a camera recording video. The drawback, according to AVG, is that many "cellphone camera sensors have an infrared filter" that would filter the light out. The retroreflective effect bounces back light thrown at it, say by a flash, which also fouls up recognition software.

Currently the glasses are just a prototype. They're more of a proof-of-concept, and AVG says you shouldn't expect to see them on sale any time soon.

"Tech experts are investigating how technology can adapt to combat the daily erosion of our privacy," it said.

Security and privacy have been in the MWC15 news, with mobile phone company Silent Circle introducing its super secure Blackphone 2 and Blackphone+ tablet.

Even if the glasses fail to fool facial recognition software, they will make all your low-light photos look like 1980s Dire Straits video.