The former president sounded the alarm on Friday.
Former President Donald Trump said that artificial intelligence, or AI, has “no real solution,” coming weeks after a series of robocalls were made in New Hampshire telling voters not to vote in the primary.
When asked by Fox Business Network host Maria Bartiromo Friday about proposals for digital U.S. central bank currency, the former president said he was concerned about their possible risks.
“Very dangerous. It’s very dangerous. One day, you don’t have any money in your account. It can be a very dangerous thing,” President Trump said. “And the other thing that I think is maybe the most dangerous thing out there of anything because there’s no real solution—the AI, as they call it. It is so scary.”
Previously, the former president has issued concerns about AI for its ability to distort voices, pictures, and videos of political candidates to deceive the public during campaigns. In his Bartiromo interview, he said that he recently saw an instance when someone used AI that used his likeness to promote their product.
“I saw somebody ripping me off the other day where they had me making a speech about their product,” President Trump said. “I said, ‘I’ll never endorse that product.’ You can’t even tell the difference. It looks like I’m actually endorsing it.”
The former president also made reference to artificial intelligence’s capacity to alter images when he spoke with another Fox News reporter on Thursday. He was asked about pictures that a Getty Images photographer took of him last month that appeared to show red marks on his hands—which at the time drew a number of speculative headlines and online rumors.
Meanwhile, a digitally made robocall that appeared to use President Joe Biden’s voice to tell people not to vote in New Hampshire’s primary was flagged last month by the state’s attorney general.
Attorney General John Formella said last month that the recorded message, which was sent to multiple voters on Sunday, appears to be an illegal attempt to disrupt and suppress voting. He said voters “should disregard the contents of this message entirely.”
A recording of the call uploaded online appeared to generate a voice similar to President Biden’s and employs his often-used phrase, “What a bunch of malarkey.” It then tells the listener to “save your vote for the November election.”
“Voting this Tuesday only enables the Republicans in their quest to elect Donald Trump again,” the voice mimicking the former president says. “Your vote makes a difference in November, not this Tuesday.”
It’s not clear how many people actually received the calls.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre had said that the call “was indeed fake and not recorded by the president.”
The president’s campaign manager, Julie Chavez Rodriguez, said in a statement that the campaign is “actively discussing additional actions to take immediately.”
Katie Dolan, a spokeswoman for the campaign of Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.), who is challenging President Biden in the Democratic primary, said Mr. Phillips’ team was not involved and only found out about the deepfake attempt when a reporter called seeking comment. The Trump campaign said it had nothing to do with the recording either.
Move to Criminalize AI Robocalls
Meanwhile, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) appears to have taken heed and moved to explicitly criminalize unsolicited robocalls that appear to use voices created via AI.
“No matter what celebrity or politician you favor, or what your relationship is with your kin when they call for help, it is possible we could all be a target of these faked calls,“ she said, adding, “That’s why the FCC is taking steps to recognize this emerging technology as illegal under existing law, giving our partners at State Attorneys General offices across the country new tools they can use to crack down on these scams and protect consumers.”
She noted that more than two dozen state attorneys general favor regulations on AI-generated robocalls.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.