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It’s not a marketing story, but I noted the story of how deepfakes are a threat to national security. You should expect to see more of these stories asking how we can put the AI genie back in the bottle. Given the new suspicion around our massive tech titans, such as Facebook and Google, we should be prepared for more dystopian fears of Skynet. It wasn’t long ago that governments sought to curtail encryption in the name of national security, so expect a similar assault here demanding watermarks and other security back doors, all because we can’t tell a fake from something real.

I don’t mean to downplay the issue. Just as we need forensics to tell us that a photo was doctored with Photoshop, AI ups the ante, where maybe there is no way to tell. And that is understandably disturbing, because we humans like to be able to trust what we see.

But expecting to roll back the technology to accomplish that is a fool’s errand. We humans have somehow coped with many situations where seeing isn’t believing over human history, and it is only going to get worse. If you think deepfakes are a problem because they can rewrite the past, wait until you see how Augmented and Virtual Reality rewrite the here and now.

Rather than blaming the technology for the problem, perhaps we need to blame the humans using the technology in nefarious ways and demanding a higher standard of proof than merely seeing. What you are witnessing is a specific example of the cat and mouse game that the scammers always are playing with the rest of us, so we just need to stay vigilant and realize that if it doesn’t feel right, maybe it isn’t right. The antidote for deepfakes isn’t technological. It’s old-fashioned human skepticism.

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Mike Moran

About Mike Moran

Mike Moran has a unique blend of marketing and technology skills that he applies to raise return on investment for large marketing programs. Mike is a former IBM Distinguished Engineer and a senior strategist at Converseon, Revealed Context, and SoloSegment. Mike is the author of three books on digital marketing and is an instructor at Rutgers Business School. He is a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO, a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research, and a Certified Speaking Professional.

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