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Facebook is cracking down on 'revenge porn'

Facebook reflection in an eye
Dado Ruvic | Getty Images

Facebook is cracking down on users who share intimate photos of someone without their permission, aka "revenge porn."

When a user reports that an intimate photo has been published on the social network without their permission, a new tool prevents the reported image from being shared on Facebook, Messenger and Instagram, according to a blog posted by Facebook Wednesday. The company's photo-matching technology is then used to flag the image if it's posted again.

Flagging an image is as easy as hitting the report link on the site. The image is then reviewed by Facebook's Community Operations team, and if the photo is in violation it will be removed — and the user account could be disabled. There is an opportunity for the user to appeal if the photo was taken down in error.

A study of U.S. victims of nonconsensual intimate photo-sharing showed 93 percent report significant emotional distress. The company says that the move is an effort to protect users and "build a safe community."