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Sextortion: The Dark Side of AI



What is Sextortion?

Sextortion is a form of sexual exploitation in which an individual is coerced into providing sexual images or videos of themselves or performing sexual acts on camera. The perpetrator may threaten to release the explicit material publicly or to the victim’s friends and family unless they comply with their demands, which may include sending more explicit material or even paying a ransom.

Sextortion can occur online through various platforms such as social media, messaging apps, and email, and can have serious emotional and psychological consequences for victims. It is a criminal offense and should be reported to the appropriate authorities.

Its victims are children and adults, males and females.


How AI and deep fake can be used for Sextortion?

AI and deepfake technology can be used for Sextortion by creating convincing fake images or videos of a victim that can be used to manipulate or coerce them. Deepfake technology uses artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to create realistic videos or images that can make it difficult to distinguish between what is real and what is fake. This technology can be used to create convincing fake sexual images or videos of a victim that can be used to blackmail or extort them.

In some cases, perpetrators may use AI-powered chatbots to initiate conversations with victims and lure them into sharing sensitive information or explicit images or videos. Once the perpetrator has enough material, they can use deepfake technology to create manipulated images or videos of the victim, making it appear as if they engaged in sexual activity. This can be used to threaten or blackmail the victim into further providing more explicit material or even to pay a ransom.

It’s important to note that the vast majority of deepfakes are created for entertainment purposes, but the technology can also be used for harmful purposes such as Sextortion. It’s essential to be cautious and mindful of who we communicate with and what information we share online, especially when it comes to sensitive and explicit material.

How can you protect yourself from sextortion?

Here are some tips on how to protect yourself from sextortion:

  1. Be cautious online: Be careful about the personal information you share online, especially with strangers or in public forums.
  2. Use strong passwords: Make sure your online accounts have strong and unique passwords. Consider using a password manager to generate and store your passwords securely.
  3. Keep your software up-to-date: Regularly update your computer’s operating system, antivirus software, and other programs to ensure they have the latest security patches.
  4. Cover your webcam: Consider covering your webcam with tape or a sticker when it’s not in use, to prevent someone from spying on you.
  5. Don’t respond to unsolicited messages: Be wary of unsolicited messages or emails, and don’t engage with anyone who sends you threatening or inappropriate messages.
  6. Don’t give in to blackmail: If someone threatens to release compromising material about you, don’t give in to their demands. Instead, report the incident to the police or relevant authorities.
  7. Report suspicious activity: If you suspect you’ve been targeted by a sextortion scam, report the incident to the police, your internet service provider, and any relevant online platforms.

How deepnude apps can be used for Sextortion?

DeepNude was a computer program that used AI and deep learning algorithms to generate realistic nude images of women from non-nude photos. This technology could be misused for sextortion by creating fake nude images of someone without their consent, which can then be used to blackmail or extort them.

For example, imagine someone sending a non-nude photo to a person they trust, and then that person uses DeepNude to create a fake nude image of them. They could then threaten to share this image with others or post it on the internet unless the victim provides them with more sexual images or videos, or performs sexual acts on camera. This kind of extortion is illegal and can have devastating consequences for the victim.

It’s important for teenagers to understand that sharing any kind of sexual images or videos, even with someone they trust, can be risky and potentially harmful. They should always think carefully before sending any kind of sensitive material and be aware of the potential consequences. If they do find themselves being threatened with sextortion, they should seek help from a trusted adult, such as a parent or teacher, or contact law enforcement.

Tips: The only way to protect yourself from this scenario is to control the photos you share with others. Let’s be careful about this! Neural network-based technologies are trained to generate pornographic images based on photos of models in swimsuits. If they have to deal with a clothed body, their algorithms don’t work well. Such photos are easy to distinguish from real ones, especially when there is an original for comparison. Deepfakes can primarily be identified by unnatural hand and finger positions.