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X blocks searches for Taylor Swift AI-generated nude images



South African spoof account owner @AdvBarryRoux’s account was recently suspended by X.

X, formerly known as Twitter has stepped in to block the sharing of Artificial Intelligence (AI) generated Taylor Swift nudes that were trending on social media.

The explicit fake images have been viewed and re-shared on X countless times. Posts and accounts sharing the fake images were flagged by her fans, who populated the platform with real images and videos of her, using the words “protect Taylor Swift” reported the BBC.

Now when users search for the images, they receive a message saying, “Something went wrong. Try reloading”.

X released a statement on Friday to confirm the removal of the images from the platform.

“We have a zero-tolerance policy towards such content. Our teams are actively removing all identified images and taking appropriate actions against the accounts responsible for posting them.”

ALSO READ: X silences controversial SA tweeter Man’s Not Barry Roux

Such was the fury over the images, that the White House’s press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre made mention of them while briefing media.

“We know that lax enforcement disproportionately impacts women and they also impact girls, sadly, who are the overwhelming targets,” said Jean-Pierre. She added that there should be a law which tackles the impact of AI on social media.

“We believe they have an important role to play in enforcing their own rules to prevent the spread of misinformation and non-consensual, intimate imagery of real people.”

“These deepfake platforms can create civil and societal unrest when used to spread mis- or dis-information in political and election campaigns, and is definitely a dangerous element in modern digital society,” said SVP Content Strategy & Evangelist at KnowBe4 AFRICA, Anna Collard.

KnowBe4 is a South African IT Security Company which recently conducted a survey to highlight the need for tighter measures in cyber security.

AI in Africa

“Apart from abusing these platforms such as in the case of creating deepfake pornographic images of Taylor Swift, these tools can also increase the effectiveness of phishing and business email compromise (BEC) attacks, when used to impersonate people we know,” said Collard.

Titled the ‘KnowBe4 African Cybersecurity & Awareness Report 2023’, the survey which spoke to 800 employees aged 18-54 in Mauritius, Egypt, Botswana, South Africa and Kenya, was conducted in 2022 with results released in 2023.

It said 74% of the respondents had believed a communication via email or direct message, or a photo or video, was true when, in fact, it was a deep fake.

Since 2019 the organization has conducted the annual Africa-wide surveys to explore whether or not people living on the continent were prepared for the security threats that come with advancement.

ALSO READ: AI tools will manage time, boost work, but won’t take over jobs, Microsoft says

@AdvBarryRoux’s account suspended

Popular spoof X account @AdvBarryRoux was recently suspended by the social media platform. Infamous for “dropping files” where he shares exclusive information only kept by central intelligence organisations such as the Hawks, @AdvBarryRoux has been seen as an insider with vast access to critical information. This has seen his followers base soar.

“Account still suspended please in the meantime follow this one for better content,” he posted, sharing a new account.

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