Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Title

Proceedings of the IEEE Computer Society Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition


The success of deep learning based face recognition systems has given rise to serious privacy concerns due to their ability to enable unauthorized tracking of users in the digital world. Existing methods for enhancing privacy fail to generate 'naturalistic' images that can protect facial privacy without compromising user experience. We propose a novel two-step approach for facial privacy protection that relies on finding adversarial latent codes in the low- dimensional manifold of a pretrained generative model. The first step inverts the given face image into the latent space and finetunes the generative model to achieve an accurate reconstruction of the given image from its latent code. This step produces a good initialization, aiding the generation of high-quality faces that resemble the given identity. Subsequently, user-defined makeup text prompts and identity- preserving regularization are used to guide the search for adversarial codes in the latent space. Extensive experiments demonstrate that faces generated by our approach have stronger black-box transferability with an absolute gain of 12.06% over the state-of-the-art facial privacy protection approach under the face verification task. Finally, we demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed approach for commercial face recognition systems. Our code is available at

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accountability, ethics in vision, fairness, privacy, Transparency


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Uploaded May 13, 2024