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The risks presented by criminals as they learn how to use the newest generation of sophisticated AI chatbots were highlighted in a harsh warning this week by Europol.
Last week, the European law enforcement agency published a blog article outlining how criminals looking for fresh methods to defraud the public will increasingly employ technologies like Google’s Bard, OpenAI’s ChatGPT, and GPT-4.
It named three areas in particular as being most concerning.
- First up is fraud and social engineering, in which targets are emailed in an effort to persuade them to open a file that contains malware or click on a link that leads to a website that is just as harmful.
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- Phishing emails, as they are commonly called, frequently contain grammatical and spelling errors and are sent to the rubbish bin. Even those that do reach the inbox are so horribly worded that the recipient can swiftly and mindlessly toss them aside.
- But, since AI chatbots can write clear, error-free communications, they can send convincing emails to recipients, who will then need to pay closer attention to their contents.
A capability that can be “abused at scale to mislead potential victims into placing their trust in the hands of criminal actors,” according to Europol, is the ability of advanced chatbots to “reproduce language patterns can be used to impersonate the style of speech of specific individuals or groups.”
According to Europol, a more persuasive form of disinformation is also on the rise because of the new generation of chatbots’ prowess at quickly and efficiently producing text that sounds authentic. “This makes the model ideal for propaganda and disinformation purposes, as it allows users to generate and spread messages reflecting a specific narrative with relatively little effort,” the agency said.
- Lastly, Europol noted that cybercriminals are now using coding as a new tool to produce dangerous software. The company noted that ChatGPT is able to produce code in a variety of computer languages in addition to human-like language. “This is an invaluable resource to generate malicious code for a potential criminal with little technical skills.”
Because that malicious activity online is getting tougher to spot, it was stated that the scenario “provides a dismal outlook” for individuals who are following the law.
In November 2022, OpenAI, a Microsoft-backed company, debuted their remarkable ChatGPT tool, which ignited the AI chatbot craze. In addition, Google just announced Bard, a tool that is comparable to GPT-4, an upgraded version. All three are renowned for their amazing capacity to generate natural-sounding text with only a few cues, and in the upcoming years, the technology is anticipated to support or even replace a wide range of various vocations.
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With just a few text instructions, you may generate creative photos, films, and audio using other comparable AI-based technology, demonstrating how no area of media will be immune to AI’s influence as the technology advances.
A recent open letter signed by Elon Musk, Steve Wozniak, and other prominent figures claims AI systems with human-competitive intelligence can pose “deep hazards to society and mankind,” which is logical given the field’s explosive growth. The letter requested a six-month hiatus so that safety standards for the sophisticated technologies could be developed and put into place. It also stated that, if managed properly, “humans can have a prosperous future with AI.”