One complaint I often hear about using Facebook is that women are not ready to post their pictures in public. Especially profile pictures. Even Facebook data shows that there are many women who are reluctant to upload profile pictures. The social and safety organizations has widely acknowledged this picture theft and there are no proper measure to stop this social nuisance.

People need more control over their profile pictures. Who can see their picture and how can they stop someone from copying it?

To solve this issue, Facebook has rolled out a new feature for Indian market. Profile Picture Guard. The tool was developedin partnership with Indian safety organizations like Centre for Social Research, Learning Links Foundation, Breakthrough and Youth Ki Awaaz, and are designed to give people more control over their experience and help keep them safe online. The social media platform tested out various features that will help to reduce the misuse of profile pictures. For example, Facebook says that design overlay can reduce picture theft at least by 75%.

As of now, the feature is available only to Indian users. India is the largest market for Facebook followed by US and Brazil.

Facebook Picture Guard

The below image is a preview of the profile picture guard. There is a blue shield that will protect your profile picture. How do I turn on the profile picture guard? Read below for the step by step tutorial on how to enable the shield.


Preview-Facebook Profile Picture Guard

People in India will start seeing a step-by-step guide to add an optional profile picture guard. When you add this guard:

  • Other people will no longer be able to download, share or send your profile picture in a message on Facebook.
  • People youre not friends with on Facebook wont be able to tag anyone, including themselves, in your profile picture.
  • Where possible, Facebook will prevent others from taking a screenshot of your profile picture on Facebook. (this feature is currently available only on Android devices.)
  • Display a blue border and shield around your profile picture as a visual cue of protection.

Facebook partnered with Jessica Singh, an illustrator who took inspiration from traditional Indian textile designs such as bandhani and kantha, to create designs for people to add to their profile picture.If someone suspects that a picture marked with one of these designs is being misused, they can report it to Facebook and they will use the design to help determine whether it should be removed from the Facebook community.

Facebook Profile Picture Guard

Image Courtesy : Facebook blog

How do I turn on profile picture guard for my current profile picture?

Profile picture guard can help protect your current profile picture from misuse. When profile picture guard is turned on:
  • Other people can’t tapShare,Send in message,Share externallyorDownloadfrom your current profile picture on Facebook.
  • Only you and your Facebook friends cantagyour current profile picture.
  • An image of a shieldHow do I turn on the Facebook profile picture guard? 1is added to your current profile picture. The shield helps show people that your profile picture should be respected.
Turn Profile Picture Guard On or Off
To turn on profile picture guard for your current profile picture:
  1. Click your profile picture
  2. ClickOptions
  3. ClickTurn on Profile Picture Guard
  4. ClickSave
To turn off profile picture guard for your current profile picture:
  1. Click your profile picture
  2. ClickTurn off Profile Picture Guard


Have you turned on your Facebook Profile Picture Guard yet? What do you think of this new feature?

Post your comments below and let us know your thoughts.