How AI-Generated Voice Scams Can Threaten Your Business
AI is in the news constantly, and for good reason: It’s a rapidly evolving tech that has the potential to disrupt many facets of modern life—some good, and some bad. The bad, unfortunately, can be used against your business in new forms of cyberattacks, some worse than others. AI seems poised to change the way bad actors target individuals and
May 23, 2023
AI is in the news constantly, and for good reason: It’s a rapidly evolving tech that has the potential to disrupt many facets of modern life—some good, and some bad. The bad, unfortunately, can be used against your business in new forms of cyberattacks, some worse than others.
AI seems poised to change the way bad actors target individuals and businesses alike. There’s no better example of this than AI-generated voice scams. In these scams, bad actors can use an AI tool to create a fake version of a known voice, with very little effort. All they need are enough audio samples of that voice to create the dupe, then use AI text-to-speech to trick people into thinking they’re hearing the real person.
It sounds like something out of science fiction, but it’s already happening. CBS News recently featured Rachel Tobac, an “ethical hacker,” who uses these tools to educate the public of various threats. Tobac demonstrated on camera how she could take samples of a CBS News anchor’s voice, feed it to an AI tool, then create an AI-generated voice of that anchor. From there, Tobac called an unsuspecting CBS News employee pretending to be the anchor, and asked for her passport number. The employee offered it without a moment’s hesitation, never once wondering whether the caller really was who she said she was.
It’s frightening to see this AI tool in action, and to know the tech is only getting better with each day. It’s easy to imagine bad actors looking for audio of a manager or boss of a company to train an AI tool with, and run a scam against that company’s employees. Perhaps you’ll receive a call from your “boss” asking you to wire funds out of a company account, or to confirm your login information to them over the phone.
While AI-generated voice tools pose real risks, the good news is our current best practices work well against them. With the scam in mind, be on the lookout for phone calls with strange requests from people you know. If your boss or manager calls you to ask for something out of the ordinary, or for personal or private company information, confirm with them in person or with your own phone call first.
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