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How AI voice deepfake tools are used in cyber fraud to fool you

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The Beatles were revived once again through the release of a new song, produced by AI. Artificial intelligence was able to recreate an old song, by combining parts of an old recording while also improving its audio quality.

While this sounds exciting and opens up opportunities in the creation of music that we never thought possible, it also has a dark side. The same technology can also be used for malpractice in creating deepfake voices and images.

The potential for the use of AI in fraud schemes is extremely concerning and those who employ its use continue to develop it daily. Here Kaspersky provides insight into what deepfakes are and how to protect yourself from becoming a target of deepfake schemes:

What are voice deepfakes capable of?

Open AI recently demonstrated an Audio API model that can generate human speech and voice input text. So far, only this Open AI software is the closest to real human speech.

In the future, such models can also become a new tool in the hands of attackers. The Audio API can reproduce the specified text by voice, while users can choose which of the suggested voice options the text will be pronounced with.

The Open AI model, in its existing form, cannot be used to create deepfake voices but is indicative of the rapid development of voice generation technologies.

Today, practically no devices exist that are capable of producing a high-quality deepfake voice, indistinguishable from real human speech. However, in the last few months, more tools have been released to generate a human voice.

Previously, users needed basic programming skills, but now it is becoming easier to work with them. In the near future, we can expect to see models that will combine both simplicity of use and quality of results.

Fraud using artificial intelligence is uncommon, but examples of “successful” cases are already known. In mid-October 2023, American venture capitalist Tim Draper warned his Twitter followers that scammers can use his voice in fraud schemes. Tim shared that the requests for money being made by his voice are the result of artificial intelligence, which is obviously getting smarter.

How to protect yourself?

So far, society may not perceive voice deepfakes as a possible cyber threat. There are very few cases where they are used with malicious intentions, so protection technologies are slow to appear.

For now, the best way to protect yourself is to listen carefully to what your caller says to you on the telephone. If the recording is of poor quality, has noises, and the voice sounds robotic, this is enough not to trust the information you hear.

Another good way to test your companion’s “humanity” is to ask out-of-the-box questions. For example, if the caller turns out to be a voice model, a question about their favorite color will leave it stumped, as it is not what a victim of fraud usually asks. Even if the attacker manually dials and plays back the answer at this point, the time delay in the response will make it clear that you are being tricked.

One more safe option is also to install a reliable and comprehensive security solution. Though not foolproof, tools can aid in avoiding deepfake risks—protecting browsers, checking files, and steering clear of suspicious sites.

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