Written by 5:07 pm AI Threat

### Is AI a Menace to the Upcoming US Elections?

Deep fake technology has appeared in foreign elections where the outcome has international signific…

Citizens in Slovakia were surprised to discover in October that Michalimeka, a prominent official in a social group running in an upcoming election within two days, had been interviewed by a journalist on Twitter.

As reported by Wired.com, Imeka discussed his strategies for manipulating the election during the interview, which seemed to reveal the intentions of those involved.

Both Mimeka and the blogger denied the existence of such a meeting, attributing it to the use of artificial intelligence-generated fake voices.

However, the denials, especially on the eve of the election, may not have been convincing enough.

A pro-NATO faction led by Imeka suffered a defeat against a group advocating for cutting off aid to Ukraine in its conflict with Russia.

Experts are warning that Slovakia’s situation could foreshadow challenges as Americans brace themselves for what promises to be a contentious 2024 presidential election.

The compatibility of free elections with artificial intelligence is being questioned, highlighting that threats may not always originate from external adversaries.

In a June Reuters report, rumors circulated by Ron DeSantis’ political campaign suggested that former President Donald Trump was depicted embracing and kissing Dr. Anthony Fauci, his former chief medical advisor, in a fabricated image. These images were interspersed with authentic video and audio recordings of Trump explaining his decision to retain Fauci, a polarizing figure in the COVID-19 crisis.

DeSantis’ supporters countered by alleging that Trump’s team also disseminated fabricated images, including one showing him riding an elephant. However, the dissemination of false audio during a 48-hour media and political blackout before the election made it challenging to debunk.

Legal experts Daniel I. Weiner and Lawrence Norden from the Brennan Center for Justice highlight ongoing efforts by certain lawmakers to draft legislation aimed at preventing and penalizing such manipulations. They acknowledge the complexities of enacting such laws in a country where First Amendment rights protect free speech.

These experts argue that while laws should target deceptive campaign advertisements and widely disseminated communications, they must not infringe on protected forms of expression such as movies and news reports. The effectiveness and adequacy of such laws remain uncertain.

Authors Jen Easterly, Scott Schwab, and Cait Conley underscore in a recent Foreign Affairs article the resilience of the American election system, which operates across diverse counties under the stewardship of dedicated local and state officials. Despite challenges, these officials have implemented robust security measures and collaborate closely with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

However, the wave of resignations among election workers following baseless claims of election fraud in 2020 has raised concerns. Addressing the production and dissemination of fake media from abroad and the prompt identification of false content on social media platforms pose additional challenges.

Schwab and Conley emphasize the collective responsibility of businesses, the media, and voters in safeguarding the electoral process, asserting that election protection transcends partisan interests.

In an era where misinformation proliferates and foreign interference looms large, public awareness and vigilance are deemed crucial. The need for heightened scrutiny is underscored as individuals and entities may not always have the nation’s best interests at heart.

Navigating the intricate landscape of electoral integrity amidst evolving threats demands a multifaceted approach, where safeguarding democracy hinges on upholding the sanctity of the electoral process.

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Last modified: January 10, 2024
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