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Truepic Raises $ 8 Million to Display Deepfakes, Check Photos for Reddit

How can you be sure that an image has not been Photoshopped? Make sure it was shot with Truepic. This startup creates a camera function that takes pictures and adds a watermark URL leading to a copy of the image that it records, so that viewers can compare them to make sure the version that they see has not been changed.

Truepic's technology is now the most important for Reddit, as it will verify that Ask Me Anything's questions and answers are made live by the advertised person – often a celebrity.

But beyond its usefulness for checking AMAs, dating profiles and peer-to-peer e-commerce lists, Truepic's attack is at its greatest challenge: identifying Deepfakes generated by the Artificial intelligence. It is there that the AI ​​convincingly replaces the face of a person in a video with someone else. At present, the technology is used to create fake pornography combining the body of an adult movie star with the face of an innocent celebrity without their consent. But the big worry is that it could be used to usurp the identity of politicians and make them appear to say or do things that they do not have.

The need for ways to eliminate Deepfakes has attracted another round of $ 8 million for Truepic. The money comes from non-traditional start-up investors, including Dowling Capital Partners, Jeffrey Parker, former CEO of Thomson Financial (now Reuters), William Sahlman, professor at the Harvard Business School, and Moreover. Series A brings Truepic to $ 10.5 million in funding.

"We began Truepic long before manipulated images shook democratic elections around the world, digital evidence of atrocities and human rights abuses was regularly undermined, or online identities fabricated to advance political agendas.Acknowledge its impact on society, "says Craig Stack, Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Truepic." The World Needs Technology Truepic to help redress the wrongs that have been created by the misuse of digital imaging. "

Here is how Truepic works:

  1. Take a picture in Truepic's iOS and Android app, or a paid app to embed his SDK in his own application
  2. Truepic verifies that the image has not yet been modified and the mark with a timestamp, geocode, URL, and other metadata
  3. Truepic's secure servers store a version of the photo, assigned with a six-digit code and URL, plus a place on an immovable blockchain
  4. Users can publish their Truepic app in apps to prove that they are not catching someone on a dating site, selling something broken on an ecommerce site or elsewhere
  5. Viewers can view the watermarked URL on the photo to compare it to the version saved in the vault to ensure that it was not changed after the fact

For example, the Reddit Wiki recommends that AMA creators use the Truepic application to take a photo of them by holding a handwritten sign with their name and the date on it. " Truepic's technology allows us to quickly and securely verify the identity and claims of some of our most eccentric customers," says Brian Lynch, moderator of Reddit AMA and a lawyer specializing in intellectual property of Lynch. " Truepic is a perfect tool for the ever-changing geography of privacy laws and social constructions on the Internet."

Abuse of image manipulation is changing as well. Deepfakes could embarrass celebrities … or start a war. "We are going to invest in the analysis of images and videos offline and we have already identified subtle medico-legal techniques that we can use to detect fakes such as deepfakes," says Truepic's CEO. , Jeff McGregor. "In particular, one can analyze the hair, the ears, the reflectivity of the eyes and other details that are almost impossible to make realistic through the thousands of frames of a typical video." are false enough to declare a fake video. "

This will always be a game of cat and mouse, but from newsrooms to video platforms, Truepic's technology could keep content creators honest. The start-up also began collaborating with NGOs like the Syrian American Medical Society to help provide verified documents about atrocities committed in the country's conflict zone. The Human Rights Foundation has also trained humanitarian leaders on how to use Truepic at the 2018 Freedom Forum in Oslo.

By casting the shadow on Facebook, McGregor concludes that "the Internet has quickly become a fool of misinformation." Fraudsters have taken full advantage of unsuspecting consumers and social platforms are facilitating the spread fast false stories, leaving more than 3.2 billion people on the Internet to make self-determinations about what is reliable compared to fake online … trust the Internet. "

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