Justice Secretary in General Election Warning Deepfake

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Britain’s Justice Secretary has warned of a “clear and present danger” to British democracy from deepfakes in the run-up to the next general election.

Robert Buckland made the remarks yesterday on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, saying technology offers a “liar’s dividend” as, by undermining confidence in the veracity of information, voters will simply stop to trust anything.

“It’s all about scale and accessibility. We’re in a world where even in your own bedroom, you can enable generative AI to produce content that can easily be shared in moments and at a scale we’ve never seen before,” he said.

“This will potentially have a hugely corrosive effect on trust in information. »

The National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC) has already warned that deepfake campaigns will intensify ahead of the next UK general election, which is due to take place before January 2025.

Learn more about deepfakes: How the rise of deepfakes will impact the 2024 presidential elections

Fake clips have already emerged in recent months impersonating Labor Party leader Keir Starmer and London Mayor Sadiq Khan. In the Balkans, the liberal Progressive Slovakia party recently lost elections to a populist pro-Russian group after the release of a fake audio clip showing party leader Michal Šimečka apparently discussing how to rig the vote.

Microsoft also issued a warning on technology’s ability to spread disinformation in the run-up to next year’s US presidential elections. The tech giant is launching several initiatives aimed at mitigating the threat, including the creation of an “election communications hub” to help global democracies establish secure and resilient electoral processes.

Buckland is apparently is part of a group of Conservative MPs who have written to Science Secretary Michelle Donelan calling on the Government to provide social media companies with clearer guidance on how to comply with new national security laws designed to combat foreign interference in elections.

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