‘Deep Fakes’ and What It Could Potentially Mean for Work Comp

FJ Thomas

Sacramento, CA (WorkersCompensation.com) – According to common definitions, the term “Deep Fakes” is an AI-assisted technology, or an app, that is used to create or alter a photo or video contents. While the general tendency is to pass this off as something that is used for a laugh, or perhaps fake news at the worst, three US House representatives from Florida and California issued a stern warning this fall regarding “Deep Fakes” to Dan Coats, Director Of National Intelligence.

Democrat Representative Adam Schiff (California), Democrat Representative Stephanie Murphy and Republican Representative Carlos Curbelo (Florida), expressed concerns about media that appears to be untouched but is actually manipulated. They released a statement: “By blurring the line between fact and fiction, deep fake technology could undermine public trust in recorded images and videos as objective depictions of reality.”

In an example given by Fortune, University of Washington researchers created a video of former President Obama giving a speech that never took place. It also seems, per the article, technology can not only alter media without being detected, but it can also create authentic-sounding audio clips and photos that are much more convincing than those edited by conventional software programs.

The Insurance Information Institute (III) poses the question, “What could this mean for insurers in general?” And more specifically, what could this mean for work comp?

For instance, per III, a worker could create a video of themselves getting hurt and might file a work comp claim. Or perhaps they could create a video with a medical provider or employer saying something that was actually never said.

Unless it can be definitively proven that a photo or video is fake, the claim could potentially be upheld.

“…Many employers within this state (CA) currently have video surveillance installed at key locations on their premises. Thus, the use of video can be employed to determine whether an injury actually occurred, thereby providing the employer with a viable basis for rejecting the claim on a good faith basis and ultimately prevailing at the time of Trial,” writes Jeff Sanders in a SRTK Law Firm blog post.

In Florida, a private investigator can record your activities on camera to investigate a work comp claim, but it is illegal to record any audio of your voice, according to a Coye Law Firm post.

Depending on the technology that is used, it may be extremely difficult and costly to make a determination if the media has been altered. At any rate, if a case is heavily built on video or photographic evidence, it will be prudent for both parties to thoroughly check into the credibility of the evidence with the up-rise of these “Deep Fake” instances.

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