(Photo : Image from Unsplash Website) Bank Robbers Used Deepfake Voice for $35 Million Heist | AI-Enhanced Voice Simulation Used
Bank robbers appeared to have stolen a massive $35 million from a United Arab Emirates bank by using the help of AI-enhanced voice simulation. The robbers reportedly used deepfake to mimic a legitimate business transaction that was associated with the bank.
Deepfake Vocals to Fool Bank Employees
The Forbes reported that the deepfake vocals were used to fool bank employees into thinking that they were handing over money on behalf of a certain legitimate business transaction that is associated with the bank. The story is reportedly sourced from a recently uncovered court document which took place last January 2021 when the undisclosed bank's branch manager had received what seemed to be a normal phone call.
The person that was on the line actually claimed to be the director of a large company with whom the manager had already previously spoken and sounded all alike, according to the court document claims. This was also paired with what looked like emails from the company and its lawyer which convinced the branch manager that the firm was actually in the midst of a large business deal that was worth $35 million.
Dubai Investigators Reveal Deep Voice Tech Used
According to Gizmodo, he subsequently followed the said caller's orders and started a number of large money transfers from the company into a new account. Quite unfortunately, everything then turned out to be a sophisticated scam.
Dubai investigators have then revealed that the crooks actually made use of "deep voice" technology in order to simulate the voice of the director. Authorities now believe that the scheme involved up to 17 people and that the stolen money was actually funneled to a number of different bank accounts which scattered throughout the world.
UAE Investigators Reaches Out to American Officials
Two of those accounts were actually with the Centennial Bank in the US and got an amount of $400,000. This is why the case has currently spilled into the American judicial system. UAE investigators have also now reached out to American officials for help regarding the investigation.
Despite the use of more modern technology, this is actually not the first time that something like this has happened. In 2019, a certain energy company in the UK actually suffered a very similar fate. Fraudsters were reportedly able to steal about $243,000 USD by simply impersonating the company's official CEO.
AI Market on Audio and Visual Deep Fakes
According to the people that are monitoring the AI market, it is now very unlikely to be the last time as well. Jason Moore, a particular cybersecurity expert with ESET gave a statement to Forbes. AI voice generation has been used for the new Anthony Bourdain documentary but could this be the same as deepfake?
Audio and visual deep fakes actually represent the whole fascinating development of 21st century technology. They are, however, potentially incredibly dangerous posing a large threat towards data, money, and even businesses. Scientists are also using AI to determine deepfake videos and one key is to look into their eyes.
Written by Urian B.