Anonymous Camera for iPhone blurs and blocks out faces and bodies

Do you need a camera app that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to let you quickly capture anonymized photographs and footage on your iPhone, in real-time?

If so, then Anonymous Camera is for you.

Capturing anonymized footage

The app’s developer Playground has designed Anonymous Camera together with investigative journalists with strong privacy as their top priority. All processing is done in real-time, locally on your device, without ever uploading anything to the cloud.

Powered by state of the art machine learning, it is designed as a tool of journalists, whistleblowers, researchers and activists who need to record sensitive information while protecting themselves and their sources. In an age of growing facial recognition use, this app helps you resist against the erosion of our right to privacy.

According to The Verge, the software isn’t capable of anonymizing large crowds at once, as evidenced by the below image that the publication took with Anonymous Camera at a recent Black Lives Matter protest in London.

“It’s definitely not a perfect tool for anonymizing crowd shots in protests (something its creators say it wasn’t originally intended for) but it does make anonymizing close-up photos and videos of individuals and small groups extremely simple,” notes The Verge.

You can choose to blur, pixelate or block out just the faces or whole bodies. The app also removes any metadata created by your iPhone — including date, time and geolocation — and even distorts voices in videos. Playground co-founders Gabriel Mitchel and Aaron Abentheuer were inspired to create Anonymous Camera after reading reports of journalists in the United Arab Emirates who were writing about the persecution of LGBT groups.

And because it works in real time, original photos and footage are stored only briefly, to allow the app to do its magic. This is important in an unfortunate case that someone confiscates your phone at a later date because no uncensored photos and videos will be available to them.

Anonymous Camera key features

Here’s a quick overview of what Anonymous Camera is capable of:

Facial recognition and full-body anonymization

Anonymous Camera can recognize faces in a frame and can anonymize them either by applying a solid color, noise or blur. You can choose to hide either people’s whole bodies or just their face. State of the art recognition allows faces to be anonymized from all angles and during movement. Full-body anonymization is only available on the iPhone XS and up.

Remove metadata

Users can choose to delete any and all metadata associated with the video, including time, date and location.

Distorted audio

Distort the audio track to anonymize people’s voices.

Split screen

Control how much of the frame is anonymized to perform interviews while protecting your sources.

Real-time processing

Files are anonymized in real-time using on-device machine learning and computer vision technology, ensuring that the data is untraceable from the beginning.

Local storage

All processing and storage is done locally. Nothing ever goes to the cloud (try us and use Anonymous Camera with Airplane Mode enabled).

Pricing and availability

Anonymous Camera is a free download from the App Store.

An optional one-time $2 in-app purchase removes restrictions in the free version.

All proceeds from Anonymous Camera are being donated to Black Visions Collective and Unicorn Riot during the first month.