Pentagon Explosion Hoax Created by AI Causes a Brief Market Sell-off

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Last Updated on May 23, 2023 by Bitfinsider

This past Monday was a new high for Artificial Intelligence (AI) demonstrations, or perhaps a new low. A photo of a fake explosion at the Pentagon that was soon identified as artificial intelligence (AI) created went viral on social media. Additionally, it appears to have caused a brief sell-off on the American stock market.

Many sources, including a state-owned TV channel in Russia, circulated the ominous image of smoke billowing from the famous structure.

It’s interesting to note that rumors of the fake Pentagon explosion also spread to non-official Twitter accounts with blue verification checkmarks, adding to the confusion and impact of the hoax. This underlines the significance of meticulous source verification as well as the predictable outcome of Elon Musk’s new account verification criteria.

U.S. stock indices experienced a little decline as the image spread online, but markets swiftly bounced back as it was revealed to be a fake. Following the propagation of the false information, the most popular cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, also witnessed a brief “flash crash,” falling to $26500. But according to CoinGecko, Bitcoin is slowly but surely making a comeback and is presently trading at $26,882.

The fake had enough of an effect that the Arlington County Fire Department decided to step in. They tweeted that there was “NO explosion, incident, or immediate danger to the public” at or around the Pentagon reservation.

Critics of unrestricted AI research are gravely concerned about this kind of internet fraud. Numerous industry professionals have issued warnings that sophisticated AI systems might be used by malicious actors to propagate false information and create havoc online.

This kind of deception has previously been used. Viral AI-generated images have previously misled the public, as seen in deepfakes of famous people like Elon Musk or SBF pushing cryptocurrency schemes, pictures of Pope Francis wearing a Balenciaga jacket, and fake arrests of President Donald Trump.

Famous people have also raised concerns about the proliferation of false information.

Numerous computer professionals have already asked for a six-month moratorium on the creation of powerful AI until suitable safety standards have been developed. Even Dr. Geoffrey Hinton, who is regarded as the “Godfather of AI,” resigned from his position at Google in order to express his worries about potential problems associated with AI without jeopardizing the reputation of his former employer.

Misinformation incidents like this one contribute to the ongoing discussion about the need for an AI ethical and regulatory framework. The results can be unpredictable if AI develops into a more powerful tool in the hands of deceitful agents.

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