In the News: AI Can Be Used to Create Extremely Realistic Forgeries

Authority Magazine profiled Justin Sherman, Ethical Tech’s Co-Founder & Vice President, for their “Future is Now” series with experts on bleeding-edge technological breakthroughs.

Fake news is already a problem. Recently, we saw this particularly illuminated by the White House press secretary’s usage of a fake video to justify banning a reporter. But deepfakes are going to make the issue much, much worse — because even critical consumers of information may not be able to tell if something is real. For many reasons, this could spell disaster.

World leaders have themselves demonstrated how Twitter and other social media platforms can dangerously propagate fake news with potentially devastating consequences. (In December 2016, a fake article claimed a former Israeli defense minister had threatened nuclear attack on Pakistan if it sent troops to Syria. Pakistan’s Defense Minister, not yet realizing this was fake, tweeted “Israel forgets Pakistan is a nuclear state too.”) Imagine, then, that it’s not just a sketchy news article or a poorly Photoshopped image that makes the rounds online — instead, it is a highly realistic (but fake) video of a world leader declaring war, which is then covered by a news outlet looking to “break the story” first, setting off a cascade of coverage. This is just a taste of some of the global security implications of this technology, not to mention what impact it could have on public discourse and the free press.

Read the full interview here.