Tom Hanks isn’t trying to sell you a dental plan. YouTuber MrBeast won’t give you an iPhone 15. CBS news host Gayle King isn’t recommending a weight-loss product.
I knew this stage of AI tomfoolery was coming, but it’s still surprising how fast it’s happening. Let’s take a closer look at how free and cheap tools are fueling fraud — and the signs to watch for.
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Over the past several months, a whole crop of fake AI celebrities has sprung up to trick people with false endorsements. They look and talk exactly like trusted personalities, and they’re usually shilling brands you’ve never heard of. Worse, they’re almost impossible to stop.
Certain AI — including Stable Diffusion apps and some Nvidia tech — can easily mimic “big names” in the celebrity world. Unscrupulous brands, or outright scammers, have no problem taking advantage of this readily available new tech.
Elon Musk, Barack Obama, Tom Brady, Beyonce — the list keeps going, and it’s not just about how celebrities look. AI also excels at mimicking famous voices, which is how fans mistook songs by AI mixer Ghostwriter as new releases from Drake and The Weeknd. Feeling paranoid?
Here’s what social media sites and even Google don’t want you to know: They do a lousy job vetting advertisers. They’re focused on the cash, meaning scammers end up with the real results.
If you want advice about a product or service, look at reviews or find an expert who’s well-versed and can prove it. Another smart step: Google the product and actor in the ad, along with the word “review.” If someone’s getting paid to endorse a product, there’s not just one random ad floating around social media.
It’s not just ads. AI is everywhere, and the tools are simple to access and widely accessible. Take a look at what Michael Jackson would look like today, Elon Musk as a toddler or if selfies existed in history’s biggest moments.
I used one of those viral AI headshot apps. My favorite shot is the one with my fingers going into my cheeks. Now is the time to brush up on the red flags a graphic, photograph, piece of art or image was made using AI.
If you’re still feeling iffy about an image’s origin, try a free AI detection tool. They’re not perfect, but they can help.
Don’t forget about Google’s reverse image search. If Google returns with the same image from credible sources, chances are it’s real. But if it points you to an AI site, you might want to sound the alarms. Here’s how to check on iPhone and Android.
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Plus, not a fan of smiling for photos? Google’s new app can turn that frown upside down. Caller Matt thinks he subscribed to The Weather Channel, but is uneasy about it needing his SSN. Also, the lowdown on state e-bike rebates, Klarna’s shopping AI and how to spot a hacked webcam.
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