What Is a Deepfake ? How Does It Work and Why is Deepfake technology important??

Deepfake refers to the manipulation of an image or video using advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology. Although it is very interesting, the presence of this technology brings concern because it can be used to create false info or hoaxes.

In recent years, social media has been enlivened with various images or videos made using deepfake technology. Nowadays, there are more and more applications that allow someone to manipulate an image or video.

An example of an application that uses deepfake technology that is currently being discussed is the MyHeritage application. The application has the ability to allow its users to be able to animate an old photo. In addition, there is also an application called FaceApp that is able to turn a photo of a person into a look decades older in a matter of minutes.

Nowadays, technology is indeed increasingly sophisticated. You can find various fake images or videos that seem very real. From these digital contents, you can understand that deep learning technology can really help in the filmmaking process.

Nonetheless, this technology also brings concerns to most people. If used by irresponsible people, deepfakes can be misused to create engineering videos that look realistic for negative purposes. There have been many examples of cases that use this technology to damage a person’s reputation.

If you don’t know What Is a Deepfake, How Does It Work and Why is Deepfake Video or Image technology important are yet, here we present the information for you.

What Is a Deepfake? How Does It Work and the Risks?
What Is a Deepfake? How Does It Work and the Risks?

What Is a Deepfake?

Deepfake is the manipulation of photos or videos using Artificial Intelligence (AI) enabled technology to unite one’s resemblance to the face of another person. In other words, this deepfake technology can manipulate an image or video of a person to appear as if they are doing or saying something that has never actually happened.

The word deepfake combines two terms, namely “deep learning” and “fake”. So in simple terms, deepfakes are fake videos or images created using deeplearning Artificial Intelligence technology.

This technology can very seamlessly incorporate anyone’s face into a video or photo. This kind of ability is used in Fast & Furious 7 where actor Paul Walker can be “revived”.

Some examples of applications or software that use deepfake technology such as:

  • Deepswap App
  • Faceapp
  • Faceswap
  • MyHeritage
  • DeepFaceLab
  • Zao
  • Reface
  • AvengeThem, and more

How Does Deepfakes Work?

There are various methods that can be used to create deepfake videos. Nonetheless, the most commonly used method relies on the use of Deep Neural Networks (DNN) involving autoencoders with face exchange techniques. These Deep Neural Networks are a set of algorithms designed to recognize patterns and process data in complex ways.

To create a deepfake, then you must provide the target video that will be used as the basis of the video. Then, you also need a collection of clips from someone’s video that you want to put in the target video.

Please be aware that the videos do not have to be interrelated. With autoencoder technology, the AI deep learning program will be in charge of studying the video and understanding what the person looks like from different angles and environmental conditions.

After that, other machine learning technologies will be added to the video again. The technology is called Generative Adversarial Networks (GAN) which can detect and correct flaws in deepfake videos. Generative Adversarial Networks are also used as a popular method for the creation of deepfakes that rely on the study of large amounts of data to learn how to develop images by imitating the real thing.

After several detections and repairs by GAN, the deepfake video will be completed. Many people assume that Generative Adversarial Networks (GAN) will be the main engine for the development of deepfakes in the future.

When this technology first appeared, it took experts and quite a long time to produce such effects. But nowadays deepfake technology has become more advanced so that it can synthesize images or videos in a faster time.

Why is deepfake technology important?

The technology behind deepfake videos can also benefit society. AI should complement and enhance human efforts, not replace them. Humans need to combine checks and balances and prevent improper use of technology.

Advances in deepfake video technology have led to a rapid increase in such types of videos. Face-swapping apps like Deepswap App, for example, allow users to swap their faces for celebrities or famous personalities.

This new technology allows us to generate duplicates of real faces or create new and very real images, even from people who do not exist.

The new technology has raised concerns about privacy and identity for many. If our faces could be created with algorithms, would it be possible to replicate more details of our personal digital identities?

Indeed, technology has come a long way from just duplicating the face, to the rest of the body. Tech companies don’t stand still with this. Google released 3,000 deepfake videos in the hope that researchers would develop methods of combating harmful content and identifying it more easily.

While the questions are correctly posed about the consequences of deepfake technology, it is important that we do not forget about the fact that artificial intelligence (AI) can be used for good.

For example, the development of deep fake models gave rise to new possibilities in healthcare. The patient’s privacy can be maintained properly. With a number of digital patient big data, a single hospital with sufficient computing power can create a completely imaginary virtual patient population.

The technology could allow researchers to generate data to develop and test new ways of diagnosing or monitoring disease without risking a breach in actual patient privacy.

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These examples in healthcare highlight that AI is a technology that doesn’t just have a bad impact, but can be used for good. It depends on the context of how we use it.

Geraint Rees of the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, in his article published by the World Economic Forum, said that universities have an important role to play in research and innovation and focus on making a positive impact on the world.

Ress believes that AI should complement and enhance human effort, not replace it. Humans need to combine checks and balances and prevent improper use of technology.

Different experts are also flocking to create the right infrastructure and connections to ensure that existing technological developments, can help people on a positive path.


Deepfake is a technique to put an image of the “real” person’s face in a video into the target’s face so that it seems as if the target is doing or saying things that the “real” person is doing.

Seeing the fact that deepfakes continue to spread and develop raises its own urgency for the importance of detecting this technology. In simple terms, detection works by classifying “fake” or “real” based on the video and image data that has been provided. There are various kinds of detection methods that have been studied and each method must have its own advantages and disadvantages so that deepfake detection is also still being developed today.

Technology will continue to evolve, but all control is in our hands. How we use technology plays a big role in our lives. Therefore, it is important for us to be smart and selective users of technology in trusting whatever it is.

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