The viral release of a deepfake video featuring Indian actress Rashmika Mandanna has sparked considerable concern and debate about the negative effects of this fake content. Mandana, an accomplished 27-year-old star known mostly for her work in Telugu and Kannada films, expressed her dismay at the fabricated deepfake video, describing it as “extremely scary”.
The video, originally posted on Instagram by a British-Indian named Zara Patel, shows Mandanna’s face morphing into Patel’s body. Abhishek Kumar, a journalist associated with the fact-checking platform Alt News, exposed the video as a deepfake. He highlighted the seamless change of Mandanna’s face to Patel’s in an elevator scenario, raising concerns about the deceptive nature of deepfakes, easily misleading ordinary social media users.
The original video is by Zara Patel, a British-Indian with 415,000 followers on Instagram. He uploaded this video to Instagram on October 9. (2/3) pic.twitter.com/MJwx8OldJU
— Abhishek (@AbhishekSay) November 5, 2023
Veteran Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan, who has worked with Mandanna in the past, expressed his support for legal action against such misleading content. Mandana echoed her concerns, highlighting the vulnerability of individuals to technological misuse and the profound impact it can have on their lives. He stressed the urgent need for a legal framework to combat deepfake threats.
I feel very hurt to share this and have to talk about the deepfake video it is spreading on the internet.
This is honestly, extremely scary not only for me, but for each of us who today are vulnerable to so much harm because of the way technology is misused.…
— Rashmika Mandanna (@iamRashmika) November 6, 2023
Responding to the deepfake incident, Patel expressed deep concern and concern, especially about the heightened fear and vulnerability that women and girls may experience when sharing content on social media platforms.
According BBC India, India’s IT minister Rajeev Chandrashekhar emphasized the seriousness of deepfakes, calling them a more dangerous form of disinformation. He stressed the obligation of social media platforms to prevent users from spreading misinformation under India’s IT rules, highlighting potential legal consequences for non-compliant platforms.
The incident with the release of the deepfake video has sparked calls for tougher measures to tackle this form of digital manipulation, highlighting the urgent need for strong regulatory frameworks to protect individuals from such deceptive practices.
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