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Lee Hsien Loong warns citizens of deepfake video of him promoting scam investment

Lee Hsien Loong warns citizens of deepfake video of him promoting scam investment

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Senior Minister Lee Hsien Loong has warned netizens not to believe a deepfake video of him. In a Facebook post yesterday, Lee revealed that there is a deepfake video of him asking viewers to sign up for an investment product that claims to have guaranteed returns. 

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According to Lee, the video mimicked his voice and layered the fake audio over actual footage of the senior minister during last year's National Day Message. The scammers had also synced his mouth movements with the audio, added Lee. "This is extremely worrying: people watching the video may be fooled into thinking that I really said those words," said Lee in the Facebook post. 

"Please remember, if something sounds too good to be true, do proceed with caution. If you see or receive scam ads of me or any other Singapore public office holder promoting an investment product, please do not believe them." 

May be an image of ‎1 person, money and ‎text that says '‎SCAM !SCAMAD! AD! AD IAM GLAD TO PRESENT YOU A NEW INVESTMENT ح‎'‎‎

In addition, Lee urged netizen to report the deepfake videos via the government's ScamShield Bot on WhatsApp and to stay vigilant of scams. "I thank the many of you who alerted me to this latest scam. We must stay vigilant in order to protect ourselves and the ones around us," said Lee. 

Earlier in January this year, it was revealed that Singapore will be developing new tools to better detect deepfakes and to counter misinformation.  The tools will be designed under a new SG$20 million initiative to build a safer internet, titled "Building an inclusive and safe digital society".

"Our digital way of life has exposed us to new risks. Cyber-attacks, scams and harmful content pose a growing threat to our safety and security," said minister for communications and information Josephine Teo. "As many MPs have noted, trust in society - [which is] so crucial for normal human interactions - could be undermined." 

Teo also added that Singapore has a need to grow new capabilities to keep pace with scammers and online risks. This is especially so given the concern over the misuse of deep fakes to create compelling pictures such as a recent ad featuring the likeness of Singapore leaders' to promote crypto scams. 

Photo courtesy Lee Hsien Loong, Facebook

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