Deepfake technology, which uses machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to create fake videos, is one of the biggest threats to digital security in 2020. This is McAfee's conclusion in a report published last Wednesday (4). According to the company, recent advances in AI have given less qualified criminals the ability to produce convincing clips, in which the person does something he has never done in real life. The technology, even, is used frequently in the production of pornographic videos and has already made famous victims, like Gal Gadot, Emma Watson and Barack Obama.
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"Continued advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning have led to invaluable technological gains, but threat actors are also learning to leverage them in increasingly sinister ways," said Raj Samani, chief scientist at McAfee.
Deepfakes will be the biggest security threat for 2020, McAfee study predicts Photo: Disclosure / Deep Trace
In the document, the company points out that the ability to create false content in the new. What has changed now that it is possible to produce very convincing fake videos without being a technology expert. In addition to free audiovisual tools that offer anyone resources to manipulate images realistically, there are companies that sell the service online.
"Deepfakes can be turned into weapons to intensify the information war," says Steve Grobman, the company's chief technology officer. Increasing the scope of the image manipulation technique is of concern to governments and international authorities. Thinking of lessening the impact of deepfakes in the 2020 presidential election, the United States Congress went into action against the fake videos.
"Opponents tend to use the best technology to achieve their goals. So if we think of state actors trying to manipulate an election, using deepfake videos to influence the audience makes a lot of sense. They will try to create divisions in society," adds Grobman. McAfee also warns that facial recognition, a technology increasingly present in everyday life, can be compromised with the advancement of deepfakes.
"Enhanced computers can quickly process numerous biometrics on a face and create or mathematically classify human characteristics," explains Steve Povolny, head of advanced threat research at McAfee. According to him, companies and government entities should be aware of these risks and invest in strengthening security systems.
Deepfakes are not the only threat to digital security in 2020. McAfee warns that ransomware attacks will continue to grow and will lead to two-stage extortion attacks. The APIs (Application Programming Interface, in Portuguese) are also threatened and can be exposed from native vulnerabilities in cloud services. Finally, the company highlighted the importance of the DevSecOps approach (Development + Security + Operation, in Portuguese) to reinforce the security of software developed from the so-called container technology.
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