Ubisoft Knows When You'll Die, How Many Criminals Fit Your Description

Article by George Norman (Cybersecurity Editor)

on 29 Nov 2016

Ubisoft, the game company that turned 30 this year, is promoting Watch Dogs 2 by having a bit of fun. On Ubisoft’s Selfie Reveal site, you will uncover that a lot of information is hidden inside a selfie – information that could be used for some sinister purposes by the way.

And on Ubisoft’s Predictive World website, you can find out when you’re going to pass away – alongside other predictions about who you are and what might happen to you in the future.

Watch Dogs 2 Selfie Reveal

To get started with Ubisoft’s Selfie Reveal you must enter your date of birth, accepts the terms of service, and then submit a selfie (upload an image or paste an image’s URL). Once you’re done with that, the website will bring up info such as:
  • What potential employers see.
  • What financial institutions see.
  • What emotions big pharma might target.
  • How many criminals fit your description.
  • How social media companies might use your selfie for their own gain.
  • How political organizations might misuse your selfie.
Here's what Selfie Reveal said about me.

“Selfies could be thought of as taking your own mug shot,” says David Maynor, creative consultant on hacker tools, techniques, and culture for Watch Dogs 2. “These pictures can be mined for behavior and lifestyle indicators over time. As a hypothetical example, can you imagine getting an email from your healthcare provider where they noticed you have gained weight by comparing a series of selfies over the last year, and as a result, your premiums are going up?”

Watch Dogs 2
Predictive World

In Watch Dogs 2, a predictive system wrongly identifies Marcus Holloway as the main suspect for a crime he didn’t commit. Sounds like video game fantasy? Ubisoft’s Predictive World aims to prove otherwise.

To get started with Ubisoft’s Predictive World, you must connect with your Facebook account or manually enter some information about yourself. Predictive World uses an algorithm developed by the University of Cambridge Psychometrics Centre to build a digital profile and generate multiple predictions, such as:
  • At what age you will pass away.
  • Your risk of getting killed.
  • What sort of books you like to read.
  • The likelihood of engaging in socially risky behaviors or other activities that might feel embarrassing for most people.
  • What sort of car you like to drive.
  • And much more.
Here's what it had to say about me.

Both websites promote Watch Dogs 2, the hacking-themed video game that launches on PC today, November 29.

Watch Dogs 2 – Quick Facts
  • Game type – open world action-adventure video game.
  • Release date – November 15 for Xbox One and PS4, November 29 for PC.
  • Price – starting at $59.99 for the Standard Edition.
  • Story – Play as the brilliant young hacker Marcus Holloway and fight the corrupt corporations that are using the ctOS 2.0 operating system to monitor and manipulate citizens on a massive scale. Team up with the Dedsec crew, an elite group of hackers, and expose the hidden dangers of ctOS 2.0.

Learn more about Watch Dogs 2 here and here.

Get Watch Dogs 2 from Steam.

In related news…

Ubisoft’s Selfie Reveal reminds me that Microsoft has several tools that cand bring up interesting information just by looking at your face.

And Ubisoft’s Predictive World reminds me about Apply Magic Sauce, a personalization engine also developed by the University of Cambridge Psychometrics Centre. Let it connect to your Facebook account and it will predict your main psychological traits.

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