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Movies, TV shows, radio shows, magazines, newspapers and now the Internet have always delivered some stories based on reality and others that are imaginary. Before that, books, painters, and storytellers of all sorts have done precisely the same. As humans, we need both to thrive, develop our minds, our culture, and our society.
Here's the problem: when we are not able to distinguish between fiction and reality—when we are deceived or confused—all of a sudden we do not know who is who and which is which. Yes! We are quoting Pink Floyd__ good job!
This is nothing new. Scammers, spammers, con-artists, politicians, lawyers, and big brother, in general, have always tried to alternate reality to achieve their own goals. The lies were not always as believable, not as significant in scale, and not as easy to fabricate. Then technology came along and, inevitably, the never-ending battle between good and evil right alongside it.
For today’s episode of In The News, we explore this world of fake stories, taking a deep (yes, pun intended) look at digital elements floating around the Internet and are referred to as “Deepfakes.”
As with most technology—yes, let’s not forget that this is technology—it often gets invented for commercial purposes (such as the media and entertainment space to create movies and games) or for public service purposes (such as for government or military use to help and protect citizens and fight wars) and from there, criminals and thieves are sitting in the shadows waiting to use the technology to their advantage. Deepfakes are certainly the latest, and arguably, the most fascinating and astonishing of them all. Well, at least until now.
During this conversation with Jenny and Javvad, we try to look at the issue from several different perspectives. As the fascination of such a fantastic technology may seem cool and fun, there are several scenarios where the audio and visual aspects of this technology could trick individuals, groups of individuals, and even entire societies to:
Believe something that isn’t true
Disbelieve something that is true
Make a different decision or take an alternative action than they usually would in the absence of the deepfake
There are two main areas to consider: the public consequences and the private ones. They both must be taken seriously and carefully considered when analyzing the problem as dismissing the risk on a large scale might have terrible consequences at the individual level—and vice versa.
So, while it’s no joke that deepfakes are real, the question is: how and where will you (we) be impacted today, tomorrow, and in the future? OK, one more question: at what scale will this affect us, and for how long? To answer these questions, Jenny and Javvad provide us with some real-world examples where cybercriminals are taking advantage of such technologies.
While providing some analysis, tips, and advice, we also agreed on some theories.
Have a listen and see if you will agree with us. Or let us know if you think about other angles that we might have missed. 🤔
Enjoy, and thank you for listening.
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