It’s designed to stop profile picture theft and abuse.
Facebook users in India are currently trialing a new system called the “Profile Picture Guard” which is aimed at preventing picture theft and misuse. The feature adds protection to a user’s profile photo by preventing other users from downloading, sharing and tagging it. Users availing of the service get their profile pics bordered in blue, with a shield icon below indicating they’re protected.
Additionally, Facebook says that they will be preventing users from taking profile pic screenshots “where possible.” We’re not sure how feasible that is, though, but we’ll find out when the social network actually implements the scheme.
According to The Verge, Facebook was “motivated to offer the tools after hearing from Indian social and safety organizations that some women in the country elected not to upload pictures of their faces to the internet. The tools were developed in partnership with a range of those organizations, with tests indicating the kinds of things that would cut down on the misuse of profile pictures. For example, Facebook says that something as simple as adding a design overlay to a picture means that others are at least 75 percent less likely to copy it.”
So, there you have it, Facebook folks. While waiting for Facebook to roll out this new feature to the greater masses, you might as well add a “design overlay” to your picture to at least deter would-be impostors and vandals from misusing your mug shot.