Tom Hanks Falls Victim to AI Misrepresentation: The Escalating Challenge of Deepfakes

Oscar-winning actor Tom Hanks recently drew attention to a burgeoning issue in the world of technology and entertainment.

by Faruk Imamovic
SHARE
Tom Hanks Falls Victim to AI Misrepresentation: The Escalating Challenge of Deepfakes
© Getty Images Entertainment/Gareth Cattermole

Oscar-winning actor Tom Hanks recently drew attention to a burgeoning issue in the world of technology and entertainment. The much-loved actor revealed through an Instagram post that he had been misrepresented in a deceptive advertisement promoting a dental plan.

The ad didn't use a lookalike or old footage, but rather a digitally-created, artificial intelligence (AI) version of Hanks. "There's a video out there promoting some dental plan with an AI version of me. I have nothing to do with it," the actor clarified.

AI: A Double-Edged Sword for Hollywood

This isn't the first time Hanks has addressed the topic of artificial intelligence.

He has previously highlighted the "challenge" posed by AI to the film industry. This rapidly advancing technology has raised alarms, becoming a focal point for Hollywood's recent strikes, especially amongst actors and writers.

The wonders of AI in the entertainment industry are undeniable. From creating immersive virtual worlds to restoring old movies, its applications are expansive. Ironically, Hanks himself once mentioned the possibility of AI being used to bring him back to the silver screen posthumously.

But as this technology advances, it also intensifies the ethical and practical concerns regarding the impersonation of real-life figures.

Beyond Hollywood: The Global Threat of AI Impersonations

Hollywood celebrities are not the only ones feeling the heat.

As AI systems continue to grow in power and sophistication, concerns about their potential misuse have risen exponentially. A slew of public figures, from musicians to politicians, have found themselves embroiled in fake news or scams thanks to AI-manipulated images or videos.

Artificial intelligence’s intrusive reach has extended beyond scams, even penetrating darker realms like revenge pornography. This has led the government in England and Wales to tighten legislation, streamlining the prosecution of such malicious intents.

Misinformation, always a concern in the digital age, finds a dangerous ally in AI. Deepfake videos of politicians have added fuel to the already blazing fire of online fake news. Notable figures such as former US President Donald Trump and current Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have been ensnared by these AI fabrications.

As we stand on the precipice of a new era, where the line between the real and the artificial blurs, the Tom Hanks incident serves as a stark reminder. While AI holds the promise of technological marvels, its unchecked growth could shadow its brilliance with potential threats that can’t be ignored.

SHARE