5 Deepfake Scams that Shook the Internet

Deepfake Scams are on the rise.

Employing artificial intelligence and machine learning, these scams create counterfeit audio or visual content that mimics real individuals.

As these scams become increasingly sophisticated, it becomes more challenging for the average person to distinguish between genuine and manipulated content.

Deepfakes are distorted representations of reality, created with the help of artificial intelligence.

There are many types of deepfakes, but the most common are video, audio, images, and other manipulated media.

image source: spiceworks

Deepfake scams involve the use of synthetic media, which blends animation and photorealistic art to mimic a real person’s appearance or voice.

This technology has found a niche in fraudulent activities, especially within the IT and computer programming sectors.

In this article, we delve into the world of deepfake scams, highlighting some notable instances, their impact, and how to safeguard oneself from falling victim to such frauds.

Deepfake scams

Popular Deepfake Scams

In recent years, several high-profile deepfake scams have made headlines, underscoring the urgent need for awareness and preventative measures.

Below you will find five deepfake examples where this technology is being used to scam viewers.

Deepfake scams robert pattison

1. The Viral Deepfake Video of Robert Pattinson

In a peculiar instance of deepfake technology, fans of actor Robert Pattinson were taken aback when a TikTok account supposedly belonging to him surfaced online.

However, the actor had previously stated that he had no social media presence.

The account quickly amassed over 660,000 followers, raising suspicions about the authenticity of the videos, which were later confirmed to be deepfakes.

Unfortunately, celebrities like Pattisson are often the targets of fraudulent deep fake videos.

Elon musk's deepfake video and cryptocurrency scam

2. Elon Musk’s Deepfake Video and Cryptocurrency Scam

Billionaire Elon Musk is no stranger to the crypto world. However, when a deepfake video interview of Musk discussing cryptocurrencies began circulating, it raised red flags.


The video was part of a scam scheme, but discerning investors quickly spotted the tell-tale signs of a deepfake, preventing further damage.

Deepfake 'hologram' of a binance executive

3. Deepfake ‘Hologram’ of a Binance Executive

In another crypto-related scam, fraudsters created a deepfake video of a Binance executive, using an AI hologram to lure unsuspecting victims into meetings.

The elaborate scheme was reportedly executed by a sophisticated hacking team.

Deepfake videos in remote work interviews

4. Deepfake Videos in Remote Work Interviews

The rise in remote work has paved the way for a new form of fraud – deepfake employment interviews.

According to the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), there has been an increase in scams where criminals impersonate potential employees during online interviews.

Deepfake scams zelesky

5. Controversial Deepfake Video of Zelesky

Amidst the Russia-Ukraine war, a deepfake video of President Zelesky made rounds on the internet.

The video, which was shared on a Ukrainian news website by hackers, showed the President urging his soldiers to surrender. However, the video was quickly debunked and removed.

The Risks Associated with Deepfake Scams

Deepfake scams pose a significant threat at both societal and individual levels. They can manipulate public opinion, cause reputational damage, and even contribute to financial fraud.

For instance, in the financial sector, deepfakes have resulted in millions of dollars in losses.

Preventing Deepfake Fraud

Detecting deepfakes can be challenging due to their realistic nature. However, establishing segregation of duties within financial processes can help reduce the risk of falling victim to such scams.

The Future of Deepfake Scams

With advancements in technology, deepfake scams are likely to become more sophisticated and challenging to detect.

As such, it is crucial to stay informed and vigilant. Understanding the difference between real and fake content is the first step towards combating this new form of digital fraud.

Deepfake Scams FAQs

What are deepfake scams?

Deepfake scams refer to fraudulent activities where artificial intelligence (AI) technology is used to create or alter video and audio content, making it seem like a real person said or did something they didn’t. This can be used to manipulate individuals or organizations into revealing confidential information, transferring money, or performing other actions based on deceptive or false information.

How can I identify a deepfake scam?

While deepfakes are becoming increasingly sophisticated, there are still ways to identify them. Telltale signs may include unnatural blinking patterns, poor lip synchronization, inconsistent lighting or shadows, and irregularities in the audio. Additionally, if the content seems suspicious or out-of-character for the individual portrayed, it may be a deepfake.

Are deepfake scams common?

As of now, deepfake scams are not as common as traditional phishing or email scams. However, with the increasing accessibility and advancement of deepfake technology, the prevalence of these scams is expected to rise. It’s important to stay updated on this evolving threat to protect yourself and your organization.

How can I protect myself from deepfake scams?

Stay vigilant about the media you consume and be skeptical about surprising or unusual requests. Use reliable sources of news and information, and verify unusual messages directly with the person concerned. Update and maintain strong cybersecurity measures, including using AI-based systems that can detect deepfakes.

What actions can I take if I’m a victim of a deepfake scam?

If you find yourself a victim of a deepfake scam, immediately report it to your local law enforcement and any relevant online platforms where the deepfake was posted. If it’s a financial scam, also contact your bank or financial institution. Remember to preserve any evidence of the scam, such as emails, messages, or video files.

Gary Huestis Powerhouse Forensics

Gary Huestis

Gary Huestis is the Owner and Director of Powerhouse Forensics. Gary is a licensed Private Investigator, a Certified Data Recovery Professional (CDRP), and a Member of InfraGard. Gary has performed hundreds of forensic investigations on a large array of cases. Cases have included Intellectual Property Theft, Non-Compete Enforcement, Disputes in Mergers and Acquisitions, Identification of Data Centric Assets, Criminal Charges, and network damage assessment. Gary has been the lead investigator in over 200+ cases that have been before the courts. Gary's work has been featured in the New York Post and Fox News.
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