A Chinese scammer has used artificial intelligence to alter his appearance to impersonate a businessman’s friend and steal more than $600,000 from him, authorities said.
The victim, who was given only his last name, Guo, said he received a video call in April from someone who looked and sounded like someone close to him.
However, according to an article published by a media affiliated with Fuzhou (eastern) authorities, the person was actually a fraudster who had “used artificial intelligence technology to modify his face.”
The fraudster claimed that another friend urgently needed the money to pay a deposit for the bid.
Thus, he persuaded Mr. Guo to transfer $610,000 from the company’s bank account.
“During the video call, I was confident that I recognized the caller’s face and voice, so I wasn’t suspicious,” said the businessman quoted in the article.
After making the payment, Mr. Guo sent a message to the friend whose personal information was stolen. And since he didn’t know anything and had no comprehension, the businessman realized his mistake and immediately called the police.
Guo was able to recover 3.4 million yuan (about $482,000) after police ordered the bank not to send the money, according to the documents.
The thymic culprit has not been identified.
The use of artificial intelligence, sometimes for malicious purposes, has sparked suspicion around the world, especially since US firm OpenAI launched ChatGPT, a conversational robot that can mimic the human voice, in November.
Although the interface is not accessible in China, ChatGPT has been making headlines on social media and Chinese tech giants are working hard to develop similar devices.