The CEO’s voice came through loud and clear: his instructions were to transfer a large sum of money to a certain account. This order, how-ever, was faked – something that was only discovered once it was too late. At Deutsche Welle, the German public international broadcaster, falsifications are set to be exposed more quickly in the future: Within the project “Digger”, Fraunhofer IDMT is integrating its audio forensics technology into DW’s content verification platform “Truly Media”.
“That’s a great quote! But is it real?”– it is not easy for journalists to expose forge-ries, as fake audio and video material is becoming increasingly credible. Fakes can be created by means of skilled editing, but also by imitating the speech and into-nation of a speaker very convincingly using artificial intelligence. Researchers at Fraunhofer IDMT are working on uncovering forgeries of both kinds: By analyzing “footprints” that are added during the recording – such as cha-racteristic traces of microphones – or by identifying inconsistencies in the material that result from editing. This is because “every content processing step leaves traces that can be detected with forensic tools,” according to Patrick Aichroth, Group Manager at Fraunhofer IDMT. In the joint project “Digger”, funded by Google DNI, Fraunhofer IDMT is integra-ting their audio forensics technologies into the web-based content verification plat-form “Truly Media”, which is developed by Deutsche Welle and Athens Technology Center. From 2021, with the help of this Fraunhofer IDMT “a detective’s toolkit for fakes,” journalists will be able to carry out analyses of audio material and detect manipulations.