Cover: Artificial Intelligence, Deepfakes, and Disinformation

Artificial Intelligence, Deepfakes, and Disinformation

A Primer

Published Jul 6, 2022

by Todd C. Helmus

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The purpose of this Perspective is to provide policymakers an overview of the deepfake threat. It first reviews the technology undergirding deepfakes and associated artificial intelligence (AI)–driven technologies that provide the foundation for deepfake videos, voice cloning, deepfake images, and generative text. It highlights the threats deepfakes pose, as well as factors that could mitigate such threats. The paper then reviews the ongoing efforts to detect and counter deepfakes and concludes with an overview of recommendations for policymakers. This Perspective is based on a review of published literature on deepfake- and AI-disinformation technologies. Moreover, leading experts in the disinformation field contributed valuable insights that helped shape the work.

This Perspective was sponsored by the Office of the Secretary of Defense and conducted within the International Security and Defense Policy Center of the RAND National Security Research Division (NSRD).

This commentary is part of the RAND expert insight series. RAND Expert Insights present perspectives on timely policy issues. All RAND Expert Insights undergo peer review to ensure high standards for quality and objectivity.

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