Alarm sounded over Artificial Intelligence “diabolic” threat to kids

Artificial Intelligence threat

In a joint address, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) and the Australian Federal Police (AFP) raised serious concerns about the escalating artificial intelligence threat.

ASIO Director-General Mike Burgess and Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw said they were increasingly concerned about how AI was being “weaponised”.

Commissioner Kershaw said he was particularly concerned about the increasing use of AI in creating “diabolic” child abuse material. He cited examples of how technology was “nudifying children whose clothed images have been uploaded online for perfectly legitimate reasons”.

“We’re increasingly seeing AI being weaponised, particularly in the creation of child exploitation material. Technology is being used to manipulate innocent images of children for nefarious purposes.”

He said one thing parents could do to keep their children safe was lock down their social media settings. This will make it harder for others to access images and use AI to create abusive material.

He said the AFP was also talking to social media companies about how to help identify a “tsunami of AI generated abuse material we know is coming”.

“There is no silver bullet and offenders are always looking at how they can beat technological countermeasure” Kershaw said.

AI advice on weapon building

Meanwhile, Mr Burgess highlighted the potential for AI to significantly enhance adversaries’ capabilities.

“We’re aware of an offshore extremist already asking a commercially available AI programme for advice on building weapons and attack planning” Mr Burgess said.

“And when the programme refuses to provide the requested information, the extremists will try, and have tried, to bypass ethical handbrakes” Burgess continued. “The internet is the most potential incubator of extremism. AI is likely to make radicalisation easier and faster.”

When asked how concerned he was by the artificial intelligence threat of revenge porn or other instances targeting adults, Commissioner Kershaw said it depended on how “innovative and ingenious” criminals were.

“I have no doubt that they will weaponise AI to their advantage. So we will see more victims, more than likely, and perhaps more silent victims, which we won’t know about” he said.

“And that’s why we’re really encouraging the community to contact police … to report it.”


The Australian

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