This is how they stole 300 million crowns with the help of artificial intelligence

This is how they stole 300 million crowns with the help of artificial intelligence

As is well known, cybercriminals use many methods in their suspicious activities, and one of the most unusual weapons currently is the creative use of artificial intelligence. We now have a frightening new example of this, reports Forbes.

In a rather rare case, up to $35 million – just under 300 million kroner – was stolen using a cunning fraudulent method based on artificial intelligence technology.


The astonishing theft took place in the United Arab Emirates last year, and became known after Forbes dug up a court document in which US authorities were asked to help track down some of the stolen goods that were sent to US bank accounts.

The theft occurred when the perpetrators used artificial intelligence-based “deep fake” technology to imitate the voice of the director of a major corporation in the country.

In a false voice, the perpetrators called a department head in another part of the company to inform him that the company was in the process of making a major acquisition.

To complete the acquisition, the AI-generated voice asked the department head to transfer $35 million to a number of different bank accounts. The department head recognized the manager’s voice and assumed the request was legitimate.

In addition, emails that appeared to be original were sent from the manager’s office to the inbox of the head of the department, and accordingly, a large transfer of funds began. Thus, the accounts to which the funds were transferred belong to the perpetrators.

Rare but not unique

– The Emirates Airlines investigation showed that the defendants used the “deep voice” technology to simulate the director’s voice, it was reported in Legal document.

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The phenomenon of “deepfakes” is usually associated with vivid images of people, often of a very compelling nature, but there is also an audio version of the technology that is noticeably rare. . has not been reported About what may be the only other known case of fraud using voice-based “deep fake” technology. In 2019, thieves managed to steal 240,000 crowns – roughly 2.1 million kronor – by mimicking the voice of a senior manager at a British energy company.

Security firm Symantec said in 2019 that it had detected three similar cases of fraud via “deep voice” technology, including BBC wrote about it. The security company believes that AI systems are trained with large amounts of voice that managers have made available in various ways, for example through appearances in the media, investor speeches, conferences and presentations.

According to Symantec, models trained in this way with AI can be nearly perfect.

Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

"Web specialist. Lifelong zombie maven. Coffee ninja. Hipster-friendly analyst."

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