What Is DeepFake?

Deepfake is a technology that was invented in 2014 by Ian Goodfellow and most Deepfake technology is based on Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs). This technology is able to generate images based on GANs enabled algorithms. The process of this is done by two GANs algorithms trying to fool each other into thinking a specific image is real. If done properly, an experienced GAN can create a video or an image of a person that never existed or can completely replace a person with an entirely different person. DeepFake technology has evolved so much to a point that we even audio DeepFakes.

The Deep Trouble with Deepfakes 

Are DeepFakes Dangerous?

Considering we have over thirty nations actively engaged in cyberwar at anytime one of our biggest concerns is DeepFakes that makes ill-conceived websites of deep nudes. Meaning websites that have celebrity faces or faces of ordinary people who are superimposed on a nude body and to take it a step further fake pornographic videos of these people generated by DeepFake technology. Another worry about DeepFakes is regarding politics. To explain, it is not very hard to make a falsified video using DeepFakesfor political campaigns which could easily be made to slander the opponent. If a DeepFake of a political leader inciting fear or violence is made and goes viral others countries may be forced to act like the threat is immediate and may imitate the same response even though there is no legitimacy to the claim. In this respect, seeing is believing. Have you ever received a call from a person and actually thought it was a person but later realized it isn't? Chances are it was some sort of audio DeepFake.

 AI Deepfakes U.S. 2020 Elections

Are There Benefits To DeepFake Technology?

Along with all the negativity, there are certainly benefits to this form of technology. One of the most widely used benefits is aging. Aging is used in several different industries from movies to criminal investigations to even missing children. To explain, one movie that has used DeepFake technology is a movie starring Will Smith called Gemini Man. In this movie, Will Smith is acting in double roles one as him who is older is older and the other when he was younger (around 19-21 range). By using DeepFake there were able to replicate Will Smith’s younger self, based on a previous reference from Fresh Prince Of Bellaire. A more practical use for DeepFakes is aging. Have you ever wondered what you would look like when you were twenty years older than now? Or did you want to see what your son or daughter would look like when they are your age? With DeepFake that is now possible. It is even possible to combine multiple faces to see possibilities of what a child could look like. DeepFakes are a double edge sword that can be used as a boon and a curse all depending on how you use it.

How Does This Change Things?

Assessing the Real Threat Posed by Deepfake Technology 

Since DeepFakes are so powerful and getting more powerful as more and more practicality is added to the authenticity of videos pictures and even audios go away. This means if the video is the only proof there is for a trial that could be easily ruled out since it could have been manufactured using DeepFake Technology. As the practicality of this technology increases and AI gets more intricate and smarter, we may see it all over the world. A good example is Samsung’s new phone commercial made entirely with DeepFake and not a single real person in the video. The thing you would need to ask yourself is does seeing or hearing is believing still apply after learning about this form of technology?