A recent robocall in New Hampshire, allegedly featuring a fabricated President Joe Biden voice urging residents not to vote, is believed to be AI-generated, according to disinformation experts and technology analysts.
Attorney General John Formella said that the recorded AI-generated message, distributed to several voters on Sunday, was an effort to interfere with and hinder the voting process. Formella emphasized that voters should fully ignore the contents of the messages.
The call, described by the New Hampshire attorney general’s office as an unlawful attempt to deter voters from writing in Biden’s name in the Democratic presidential primary, raised concerns about the use of artificial intelligence in political manipulation.
Ben Colman, CEO of Reality Defender, a company specializing in media file analysis, stated, “All signs point to it being a fake,” highlighting the challenges in definitively identifying manipulated content.
The voice on the robocall, obtained by NBC News, closely resembles Biden’s, but experts note subtle unnatural cadences.
Lindsay Gorman of the German Marshall Fund’s Alliance for Securing Democracy explained that identifying fakes is increasingly challenging as technology evolves.
Senator Richard Blumenthal, who introduced AI legislation in the Senate, expressed concern about the incident, emphasizing the urgent need for action against the potential dangers posed by AI-driven disinformation.
While federal law addresses attempts to interfere with voting, there is currently limited regulation specifically targeting deceptive AI use.
Activists have called for the Federal Election Committee to regulate fake ads, but no decision has been reached.
Mekela Panditharatne, Senior Counsel at the Brennan Center for Justice, noted that while using fakes in a U.S. presidential primary is new, the tactic of using robocalls to spread misinformation and suppress votes remains a concern.
The advent of voice-generation AI adds a new dimension to potentially fraudulent activities in the electoral process.
Cover Photo: Unsplash
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