“The most beautiful thing in the world is that nobody has a perfect face.” – Marilyn Monroe.
This famous quote of hers couldn’t be more true nowadays when it’s so easy to generate fake profile pictures with the help of A.I and some other tools.
Take the example in the following pictures; most people wouldn’t believe if these are fake, as in, the person never existed.
Internet marketers have been using fake profile pictures for years. They use them to generate more traffic and leads on their websites without spending any money on advertising campaigns that would cost a lot of time and resources. With some help from A.I they can get familiar faces in seconds, and this is only the tip of the iceberg, and we’ve only just begun.
You can check on google for “fake profile pictures for Facebook”, then boom, from a few clicks, you’ll arrive on the websites like thispersondoesnotexist.com, it will generate a fake face every time you hit refresh. Simply amazing.
It’s easy also to create a fake profile picture for marketers. With just a few clicks, I can create an image of my family and me on vacation in the Bahamas, making people think I have more time off than I do. This is great because now, when someone asks if I want to go out for a happy hour after work, they’ll know that’s not possible.
I made these images using randomuser.me
How can you create fake profiles?
You need to learn about deep learning, specifically learning algorithm called generative adversarial network.
It has been developed that could change the way marketers do their jobs. The GAN is still in the early stages, but it’s already shown promise as a means to generate realistic images from text descriptions of what they should look like.
It can’t yet produce videos or sound, so brands will have to use other methods for those aspects of content marketing. But how does this work? In a nutshell, two neural networks compete with each other: one generates data and the other evaluates it. If the generator makes something that looks real enough to fool the evaluator, we know it’s made progress toward creating more convincing fake imagery.
If you think that the only things fake on Facebook are its users, then you’re wrong. It turns out that there is a fake profile epidemic.
A new trend amongst dating app users is to substitute their profile pictures with images of celebrities or models. This phenomenon has been documented in several different ways over the past few years, but it’s still unclear why people are doing this. One theory is that they don’t want to be judged by their looks and instead rely on personality alone. Another possibility is that they’re trying to show off who they think they are rather than what might be true about them. Regardless, there’s no denying that swapping these photos seems like an easy way for someone to make themselves seem more attractive than they are!
Even though they’re getting better at creating fake profile pictures, humanity still has a hope to recognize them instantly.
How are people using fake profiles?
Jack was a timid, awkward person. He would sit at home all day and never talk to anyone. One day he created an online profile and followed his crush’s every move on social media. She was in some of his classes as well! So every time she posted something on Facebook or tweeted about a date with her boyfriend, Jack felt good because it meant that Jill wouldn’t ever find out how much he liked her if she didn’t see the posts. Every time she had one of those cute pictures taken with her friends, Jack couldn’t help but feel happy for himself too.
If it’s all too familiar story, then there you go. Fake profiles are a great way to play around on social media, create new identities, and market yourself effectively. In some social media like Quora, using fake profiles is discouraged, even frowned upon. But not in most cases out there.
How you can identify fake profiles:
Watch for people who have few or no profile pictures, have a picture unrelated to the question, have only one photo of themselves.
- Look for posts from that person that is not in any way related to the question – there will be people who are sharing their information freely.
- Look at body language – Look in the eye, if it’s natural, you’re likely dealing with a fake profile.
- Integrate contextual clues. Are they using different names on other sites like LinkedIn or Instagram? That might also indicate a fake account.
A final indication can usually be found in descriptions and where they work/went to school even though the profile name is not explicitly shared here; look at what they choose to say.
To find out if a photo is fake or not, take the following steps:
1) If the image looks very detailed and does not look like it was taken from a distance for security purposes, there’s probably something wrong with that profile picture. For example, clothes worn are too clear to be seen without examining them closely, and shadows can’t be seen.
2) High-quality pictures with high contrast may have been photoshopped onto other images- though identifying these as fakes will require moderate knowledge of photography techniques for detection on different cameras in various lighting conditions
3) Look at them in the eye and trust your instinct. Most, if not all A.I generated eyes are hollow; they’re expressionless and can be easily spotted if you’ve been living for some time (i.e., an adult). Something is unsettling about a fake eye, and it’s not just because of the uncanny feel; It’s also the way they seem to look at you. It doesn’t matter if it is a human-like robot or an animated character. There is always that feeling that someone has put on their mask for Halloween and forgotten to take it off afterward.
It’s scary and exciting at the same time. Imagine what they can do in the next five or ten years?