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Lawmakers Warn About Threat of Political Deepfakes by Creating One


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A screenshot of "Rep. Michael Waltz" from the deepfake video.

U.S. Reps. Michael Waltz (R-FL) and Don Beyer (D-VA) produced a deepfake video for the U.S. House Science subcommittee to demonstrate the threat such disinformation presents.

Credit: House Science, Space, and Technology Committee

U.S. Reps. Michael Waltz (R-FL) and Don Beyer (D-VA) produced an artificial intelligence-doctored political video, or deepfake, for the U.S. House Science subcommittee to demonstrate the threat such disinformation presents.

Lawmakers are worried of malefactors using deepfakes to disrupt and divide U.S. voters in the run-up to the 2020 election, and Waltz and Beyer are urging investment in deepfake-detection solutions, especially as production tools become increasingly affordable and accessible.

State University of New York at Albany's Siwei Lyu, who helped craft the deepfake demo, said his software could generate deepfakes of a minute-long YouTube video in eight hours.

Meanwhile, the University of California, Berkeley's Hany Farid cited the sluggish progress of technology platforms like Facebook and Google to address deepfakes.

Said Farid, "They have to start getting serious about how their platforms are being weaponized to great effect and disrupting elections, inciting violence, and sowing civil unrest."

From The Washington Post
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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