The Rise of Fake Nudes: How AI is Creating a New Form of Cybercrime

Fake nudes and AI Artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful technology that can create realistic fake videos, images, and audios of real people or places using deep learning techniques. These are called deepfakes, and they have been used for various purposes, such as entertainment, education, and political propaganda. However, they can also be used for malicious purposes, such as cyberbullying, blackmailing, and identity theft. One of the most disturbing applications of deepfakes is the creation of fake nude images of women from regular photographs, without their consent or knowledge.

According to a report by Sensity, a cyber research agency tracking deepfakes, unidentified cyber criminals have rolled out a service that allows anyone to create fake nude images of women from a regular photograph, using a bot called FraudGPT. The bot is available on the dark web and Telegram channels, and it works only on images of women. The bot feeds back a version with any clothing deleted and replaced by fake but at times authentic, but often evidently fake skin and private parts. The tool is available for free, but the photos will be watermarked. Users can pay $1.5 (about ₹ 110) to remove it, the report said.

fake nudes and AI The report also revealed that approximately 104,852 women have been targeted and had their personal “stripped” images shared publicly as of the end of July, 2020. The number of these images grew by 198% in the last 3 months, the report said. Most of the users and victims appear to be from Russia, but the bot can be used by anyone from anywhere. The bot’s affiliated Telegram channels are filled with thousands of synthetically stripped images of young women taken from social media and private correspondence, the report said.

This is a serious violation of the women’s rights and dignity, and it can have devastating consequences for their mental health, reputation, and relationships. The victims may not even be aware that their images have been manipulated and circulated online, and they may face harassment, abuse, and stigma from others. The perpetrators may also use the images to extort money, favors, or sexual services from the victims, or to spread false rumors and damage their credibility.

The problem of fake nudes is not limited to FraudGPT. There are other tools and platforms that enable the creation and distribution of deepfake pornography, such as DeepNude, which was shut down in 2019 after public outcry, and DeepFakeLab, which is a software that allows anyone to create deepfake videos. There are also websites and forums that host and share deepfake pornographic content, such as TheFappening, which features AI-generated nude images of celebrities.

The legal and ethical implications of fake nudes are complex and challenging. There is no clear and universal regulation or legislation that addresses the issue of deepfake pornography, and the existing laws on cybercrime, privacy, and defamation may not be adequate or applicable in all cases. Moreover, the detection and removal of fake nudes can be difficult and time-consuming, as the technology is constantly evolving and improving. The victims may also face barriers and obstacles in reporting and seeking justice, such as lack of awareness, evidence, or support.

fake nudes and AI Therefore, there is an urgent need for more action and awareness on the issue of fake nudes and other forms of deepfake cybercrime. The governments, the tech companies, the civil society, and the public should work together to develop and implement effective and comprehensive measures to prevent, combat, and punish the perpetrators, and to protect, support, and empower the victims. The measures should include legal, technical, educational, and social aspects, such as creating and enforcing laws, developing and deploying detection and verification tools, raising and spreading awareness, and providing and facilitating counseling and assistance.

Fake nudes are a disturbing and dangerous phenomenon that exploits and harms women using AI technology. They are a new form of cybercrime that requires a new form of response. We cannot afford to ignore or underestimate the threat of fake nudes, as they can have serious and lasting impacts on the lives of millions of women and on the society as a whole. We must act now to stop the rise of fake nudes and to ensure the ethical and responsible use of AI for the benefit of humanity.

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