On the Christmas Day, the entire household of the United Kingdom was delivered a speech by her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, at 3 pm, as the ritual and a part of the annual tradition. Channel 4 also followed its tradition of broadcasting the alternative speech at the same time as that of the Queen’s, delivered by few other renowned personalities and notable figures, including the former President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Edward Snowden, Ali G and Marge Simpson. On the most recent occasion there was a dance video of her majesty performing for a routine made famous on the social media platform, TikTok. It became apparent as soon as possible that the British public were watching a digitally manipulated version of the Queen. The deep fake technology was used to alter her behavior and the imitation of the body languages and her voice being provided by the English actress and comedian Debra Stephenson. Apparently, the intention behind this broadcast was to provide viewers with a stark warning of the possible dangerous threat posed by the fake news, with the director of program, Ian Katz, who described the video as a commanding reminder that we can no longer trust our own eyes.
Deep fake tech is a core form of the Artificial intelligence, which combines the two terms of deep learning and fake! Typically, it involves the usage of deep learning which is a category of AI concerned with algorithms that learn and get more intelligent over the time to fake the videos. Neural networks photograph large datasets in order to absorb how to replicate a person’s behaviors, conduct, voice and facial expressions. Facial-mapping technology is also used to exchange the face of one person into another face using deep-learning algorithms. As such, deepfake technology offers a clear danger of producing content that can be used to make people believe something is real when it is not, as said by Peter Singer, cyber security and defense-focused strategist and senior fellow at the New America think tank.
Areeq Chowdhury, who researched about this deepfake technology being applied to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and former Leader of the Opposition Jeremy Corbyn when they were contesting the 2019 general elections, Channel 4’s decision to highlight the impact of deepfakes was the right one, but the technology does not, at present pose a widespread threat to evidence sharing. There certainly is a risk which is becoming easier day by day to use these deepfake technologies and the challenge becomes to tackle the fake information which is already out in the open and they would suppress the genuine video footages too. Chowdry, recently shred his view with the reporters that in his view, they are considerately always concerned about this tech but the main threat with the deepfake tech today is that, they use these information in the non-consensual pornography, rather than information. In fact, the Queen’s alternative speech is far from being the first widespread application of deepfake. Since 2019, the number of deepfakes online has grown from 14,678 to 145,227, a staggering growth of 900 percent YOY, says the Forrester Research, meanwhile, projected in October 2019 that deepfake fraud scams will have cost $250 million by the end of 2020.
In order to guard these frauds from happening, a three pillared strategy was set which included, Employee training and Awareness program, a Detection model, which identified the false media and a response strategy to ensure the origination can retain its rapporteur. However, it is clear that in the current era of disinformation, deepfakes represent a seriously dangerous weapon. To overcome this, the democracies must either have to learn to live with such lies or outsmart them or act swiftly to maintain the truth before it fades away.