Desperate Russia 'planning dirty tricks campaign involving Zelensky deepfake'

Ukraine has accused Russia of preparing to launch a ‘deepfake’ of President Volodymr Zelensky.

Authorities have alleged the deepfake will depict Mr Zelenksy making a statement on the war during which he will express a negative attitude towards certain cities.

Deepfakes are manipulated videos or images that use artificial intelligence to make false media that purports to be genuine.

The disinformation can be used make events that never happened appear real, place people in certain situations they were never in or be used to depict people saying things they never said.

Posting a warning on Twitter the Ukrainian Parliament said: ‘Russia plans to launch a new deepfake with President Zelensky.

‘In a fictitious statement, the president will allegedly express “his negative attitude towards Ukrainian cities, in particular to Mariupol,” according to the Center for Information Security.’

Russia plans to launch a new deepfake with President @ZelenskyyUa.
In a fictitious statement, the president will allegedly express “his negative attitude towards Ukrainian cities, in particular to #Mariupol,” according to the Center for Information Security.#StopPutin

Deepfakes have already been used by both sides on the war in Ukraine.

Last month a deepfake video of Vladimir Putin declaring peace was shared on Twitter before it was quickly taken down.

Similarly, a deepfake video of Mr Zelensky telling Ukrainians to put down their weapons was removed from Youtube and Meta.

The deepfake also appeared on the Ukrainian TV network Ukrayina 24 during a live broadcast, with the network later saying it had been hacked.

Before the previous deepfake’s publication, the Ukrainian Center for Strategic Communications had warned Russia may use deepfakes to convince Ukrainians to surrender.

However, the footage, which showed Mr Zelensky behind a podium appearing to make a statement, was quickly debunked due to its crudeness.

The president’s head was too big for his body and his face pixelated.

At the time the real Mr Zelensky called the disinformation a ‘childish provocation’.

However, experts have warned future deepfakes may be more sophisticated.

Russia-Ukraine war: Everything you need to know

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, the country has suffered widespread damages and loss of life amid a major bombing campaign.

Millions of people have fled the country, with thousands of British people opening up their homes to Ukrainian refugees.

During the course of the war, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has remained in Kyiv, despite the Ukrainian capital being subjected to a barrage of bombing.

Zelensky has continuously pushed for aid and support from world leaders, as well as pressing for fast-tracked NATO membership.

Meanwhile, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has been widely condemned for his attack on Ukraine.

His actions have been met by harsh economic sanctions, bans from competing in major sporting events, and countries moving away from using Russian oil.

  • When did Russia invade Ukraine? A war timeline of important events
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  • When did President Vladimir Putin come to power?
  • Who is Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky?
  • What is Ukraine’s currency, language, and what does its flag symbolise?
  • Does Russia have any allies and what have they said about Ukraine?
  • What is NATO and which countries are members?
  • How to talk to children about what’s happening in Ukraine
  • How to cope with World War Three anxiety

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