Humanity is one convincing deepfake away from a global catastrophe



Last year marked the 40th anniversary of the almost-apocalypse. 

On Sept. 26, 1983, Russian Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov declined to report to his superiors information he suspected to be false, which detailed an inbound U.S. nuclear strike. His inaction prevented a Russian retaliatory strike and the global nuclear exchange it would have precipitated. He thus saved billions of lives.

Today, the job of Petrov’s descendants is much harder, chiefly due to rapid advancements in artificial intelligence. Imagine a scenario where Petrov receives similar alarming news, but it is backed by hyper-realistic footage of missile launches and a slew of other audio-visual and text material portraying the details of the nuclear launch from the United States.

It is hard to imagine Petrov making the same decision. This is the world we live in today.