“Modern Propaganda Machine” Deepfakes The Dangerous AI Weapon


Ever wanted to star in your favorite movie? Be with your celebrity crush in a video or picture? Or wanted to just make someone say something they did not? Well, then you are into deepfakes.

Deepfake is a synthesized media that’s used by Artificial Intelligence called deep learning; the usage of it to make images and videos from scratch about anything anyone pleases, it’s purely fake but feels completely authentic.

Source: Identity Management Institute

It started to come up in limelight during 2017 by a video shared by a Reddit user.

How does Deepfake work?

It’s pretty simple to put into words how it works; you just basically have to manipulate with someone else’s face and voice and you could be putting words into someone’s else mouth or just cloning themselves into something you like.

How does Deepfake work?
Source: Open Democracy

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There’s a catch because there’s a whole process behind it. There are mainly two ways you could make a deepfakes and here’s what it is and how they work:

Let’s suppose you want to make a video of Person A being fixed onto Person B, you will now use the image of Person A and put it into the software where an AI algorithm called an encoder. It looks for similarities between both the faces and brings it down to common features of both, it will also compress the image.

Once the image completed, it moved to another AI algorithm called decoder; it works two ways the first decoder makes do the image of Person A while the second decoder works with Person B.

It simply reconstructs the desired face (in this case person A’s face onto person B’s orientation) and done on every frame.

The second way to do this is to use GAN. GAN uses two artificial intelligence and produces realistic images and outcomes after doing the same process on and on.

Source: How To Geek

The first AI used herein which random noises are fed into the system to make images which then added to the discriminator which will improve as it’s repeated.

Within a while, you will see a realistic deepfake in Infront of your eyes.

Where is DeepFake used?

Deepfake majorly used widely in illegal industries, but then some people also used it for taking revenge and for other purposes as well.

Where is DeepFake used?
Source: BBC

Misusing famous celebrity’s images in various scenarios, not only this for any political figure their speeches can be tampered with and converted into something conspicuous. All these could bring demise to one’s reputation and create chaos no one can imagine.

Like every tech bad side, it’s also got positive ones too. Some people bring their dead loved ones to live with the Deepfakes.

DeepFakes Softwares Used in 2021

DeepFakes Softwares Used in 2021
Source: TechJuice

Living in the 21st Century, technology made everything easier which brings DeepFakes to the fine spot. Because many software is just right there on AppStore at your service like Zao, Wombo, and reface;

Such software surely capable of making deepfakes real quick, but considered harmless and mostly used for fun purposes.

However, it requires skills and patience along with time to make a believable deepfake. While deepfake can ruin many lives and cause harm to a lot; there’s always a way to outsmart it.

Here are ways that can help someone identify a deepfakes:

Source: YouTube

The videos or images will have flickered spots on the face, there will be evident glitches, the videos might not be rendered to a level they should’ve been for e.g being able to render small details like hair, teeth, and jewelry.

All these ways giveaway of how to spot deepfake, but there’s still a chance to get manipulated and destroyed.

With that being said, many officials are now working on devices that will catch any deepfakes, at this point AI might be the best possible option to help achieve their goals.

DeepFakes Jumps into Politics:

DeepFakes Jumps into Politics:
Source: BBC

Deepfakes developing as the most lethal fraud weapon and would benefit politicians in creating unimaginable propaganda that no one witnessed before. It’s been in the industry for too long, but in 2021, its effect on political propaganda would be more dangerous than ever, everyone has seen its impact from the previous events.

In 2020, one of the highlighted political dramas exhibited by a Belgian Branch of Extinction Rebellion tried to used AI to fictionalize Belgium Prime Minister Sophie Wilmes’s speech.

Source: Journalism.Design

To accomplish the task, that particular group used an official video address made by Wilmes and used the machine to manipulate her voices which resulted like this,

“Wilmès is generated in a video making a fake speech in which she claims that Covid-19 is directly linked to the “exploitation and destruction by humans of our natural environment”.

The political attack considered as one of the dangerous moves in Deepfakes and many of the countries working against it.

Deepfakes are something that might become commonplace in the future and something we must become used to, and like with any technology, it could become useful to society when used well or become a menace to society if abused.

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