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Artificial intelligence is making fake news worse

Published by Business Insider on Fri, 06 Apr 2018

AI can alter what a person said on video.University of Washington researchers prove how that happens.Finding the right sources will help a consumer navigate what's true versus false. Fake news has become a buzzword, thanks to social media. This becomes even more worrisome in light of the recent scandal about Facebooks shady data-sharing and advertising practices.But we havent seen anything yet. Because of the latest technological breakthroughs in AI,reality itselfor our perception of itcould be at stake.Fake VideosWith tools that are availableright now, AI-driven fake videos are ready for primetime.Computers can study a persons voice and facial expressions, then produce a convincing video of that person saying anything.I know thats hard to believe.So heresa demonstration videoproduced by University of Washington researchers. They use clips of former President Barack Obama, but it could be anyone.Adventurous FakeApp users have used it to create realistic-looking celebrity porn. They replaced the original heads of the actors with those of movie stars and singers. And thats not even the worst you can do with this new technology.Take politicians or top business leaders, for example. Stock prices often move when a CEO or a Federal Reserve official says something important. But did they really say it' With this technology out there, you cant be 100% sure unless you were in the room.The potential for mischief is obvious. Worse, the mischief-makers can make a bundle by generating price movements, so you can bet it will happen. We just dont know where or when.Find Reliable SourcesThese technologies have valuable, legitimate applications. The problem is that theyre also highly vulnerable to abuse. VR producers tinkering with new ideas may discover methods that are dangerous in the wrong hands.We should probably expect fake news to reach a new leveland well need new ways to find accurate, useful economic analysis.I suggest you identify a few reliable sources whom you know to be real. Dont expect them to be infallible; even knowledgeable, well-meaning people are subject toexpert blindness.What you want are informed yet skeptical curators who can recognize whats real and valuable.Im lucky in that regard, since I talk toJohn Mauldinalmost every day. In addition to my own sources, I get the benefit of his network to follow the economy and financial markets. We know theyre real people, not simulations.You may not have direct access to John (though reading hisThoughts from the Frontlineis the next-best thing), but you can build your own circle of trust. When you cant be sure whats real, quality is more important than quantity.SEE ALSO:Global markets bounce back as concern over Trump's trade war easesJoin the conversation about this storyNOW WATCH: How all-you-can-eat restaurants don't go bankrupt
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