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Tendulkar’s strong reaction on Deepfake & the Battle for Truth.

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In a rapidly changing technological era, reality is quickly becoming indistinguishable from fiction. Sachin Tendulkar’s recent brush with a deepfake video highlights the dark side of AI and its ill effects. Tendulkar was dismayed by the viral video that showed him promoting a gaming app called ‘Skyward Aviator Quest’. 

Sachin Deepfake
Sachin’s viral fake video shows him promoting a Gaming App.

He turned to Twitter to express his concern about the rampant misuse of technology. He further stated that it is disturbing to see such fake videos. In the above episode, AI technology won another battle by fooling people and spreading false information.

What are deepfakes? – The Technology Behind it.

They are synthetic media consisting of images or audio-visuals. They are made using AI technology to mimic real-world people. Thus, deepfakes result from AI-driven’ deep learning’ for producing ‘fake’ content.

Neural Networks

The technology behind creating deepfakes has dramatically improved. Machines today use generative AI for communications and learning systems. They have evolved to operate without human need, resulting in the creation of fake content faster and of better quality.

They further leverage sophisticated neural network architectures to analyze and replicate any audio-visual patterns. This technology makes fake content that resembles reality and can mimic the facial expressions of real subjects.

The Ethical And Societal Concerns of Deepfake Technology.

The rampant prevalence of deepfakes in the digital world affects all information-related sectors. Apart from identity theft, they create false narratives, damage reputations, and infringe upon privacy. Let us see in closer detail its impact on our daily lives:-

News and Journalism:

Deepfakes have become a potent tool for spreading false information and influencing narratives. They have been in the news recently over numerous famous incidents. Let us see some of the examples of their recent misuse:

Fake News

Politics:

Arrest of Donald Trump: Deepfake
Arrest of Donald Trump.
Pope Francis wearing a Balenciaga puffer jacket: Deepfake
Pope Francis wearing a Balenciaga puffer jacket.
The explosion of Pentagon: Deepfake
The Explosion Of Pentagon.

What is common to the above three images?

All three are fakes. The above image, which shows an explosion at the Pentagon – caused a brief panic in the stock market exchanges. These images showcase the capacity of AI technology to create confusion and sway perceptions.

Deepfake politics

Celebrity Sphere:

Recently, actress Rashmika Mandana, Shrivalli fame from Pushpa, was a victim of a viral fake video. Later, investigators discovered it was a video of British Indian influencer Zara Patel. The deepfake was created by using sophisticated face-swapping techniques to swap the faces and give a real effect. 

Deepfake celebrity

Rashmika expressed her shock over the situation. Reflecting further, she shared her helplessness in tackling the situation had it occurred during her school or college years. Emphasizing the urgency of the issue, she requested the community to address such issues with urgency to prevent any such identity theft. Similarly, such fake videos have previously targeted other Bollywood actresses like Alia Bhatt, Aishwarya Rai, Kajol, and Katrina Kaif.

A deepfake video even targeted the Indian PM. The viral video showed him doing the Garba dance, which prompted the PM to highlight and underscore the gravity of the situation.

Strategies for combating Deepfake:

Deepfake strategies

We need a comprehensive plan focused on creating public awareness, formulating proper laws, finding technological solutions, and verifying existing information.

Public Awareness: In order to deal with deepfakes, people need to be more informed and aware. They need to be cautious about the news and information they see online. People should be informed and educated about identifying and reporting deepfakes. MeitY can take the lead in organizing workshops, online courses, and educational campaigns to create information awareness among the public.  

Legal Framework: India is among the one of the most susceptible nations for deepfake targeting. The minister of MeitY, Ashwini Vaishnaw, has often recognized the need to improve current laws and reiterated the government’s resolve to create penalties for both creators and platforms. Therefore, an informed discussion involving the participation of all relevant stakeholders is required. It should be followed by appropriate laws which are devised to keep up with the rapid AI advancements.

Technological Solutions: We must find specific and specialized solutions to match the advancements of deepfake technology. The use of technologies like blockchain and AI can prove instrumental. Blockchain can track the origin of the video, and AI can help check the video for any tampering.

Verification Tools: News websites can further boost public confidence by providing AI Bots/assistants to authenticate online information easily. These AI assistants can help people establish the authenticity of any information. 

The Road Ahead with Deepfakes.

Deepfakes will only grow more sophisticated and complex in the future. Our discussion has shown how deepfakes impact various fields, including news and politics, thus changing the narratives and public perception. By altering information, deepfakes are blurring the line between real and artificial content daily. Furthermore, the targeting of celebrated people by deepfakes showing them indulging in controversial acts raises significant privacy concerns. 

The future needs us to combine technology, laws, and public awareness. This approach is necessary to fully address the complex problems caused by deepfakes.

Deepfake future

Sachin Tendulkar’s Stand against Deepfake and Our Call to Action.

The ‘Tendulkar episode’ should act as a call to action for all of us. It prompts us to recognize and unite in our fight against the potential misuse of AI technology. By combining awareness, legal action and technological innovation, we can collectively safeguard the integrity of our digital world. 

Sachin's stand

The battle with deepfakes is about more than just preserving the truth; it’s about maintaining the integrity of our digital space. It is about ensuring that the digital space remains an extension of our physical space, not a distortion of it.

The journey ahead remains complex due to the deception posed by the deepfakes. But we can cross it with coordinated efforts and a steady commitment towards preserving truth. The fight against deepfakes is more than a technological challenge. It is a challenge of human resolve to uphold the sanctity of truth in our increasingly digital world.

About the author

Vishal

An Engineer by education, public servant by profession and a pet parent. A novice cyclist, avid reader, adventure and cricket enthusiast, computer gamer, chess player by passion, overall a learner at heart. Life is too short for the overwhelming variety and entirety of experiences. There are so many things to try, learn and experience.

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Nayyar Khan

Wonderful article. Quite informative and has vividly dealt with the subject matter. It’s high time we attend to this technological challenge with better coordination with all stakeholder agencies, enhancing public awareness & devising more effective technological & legislative solutions.

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