The faked nude images of more than 100 000 women have been created and shared online. The clothes of the women were reportedly digitally removed by Artificial Intelligence (AI), and spread via the messaging app Telegram.
Some of the images are also believed to have been altered to make the women appear underaged, according to a report by intelligence company Sensity. The company added that the technology was used as a deepfake bot would.
Deepfakes are computer-generated templates that are usually used to layer over videos and pictures. In 2018, there were a number of celebrities, including Selena Gomez and Bella Thorne, who were distressed when they found out their faces had been used in deep fake pornographic videos to make it look as if they were participating in lewd acts.
According to Sensity’s Chief Executive Giorgio Patrini, using photos of private individuals is a fairly new development. “Having a social media account with public photos is enough for anyone to become a target,” he said to BBC.
BBC investigations found that there in an intelligence-powered bot within Telegram that allows users to send the bot a photo of a woman, and it digitally removes her clothes within minutes.
This has been one of the factors leading to Russia banning Telegram earlier this year.
“Many of these websites or apps do not hide or operate underground, because they are not strictly outlawed,” said Patrini. “Until that happens, I am afraid it will only get worse.”