Truepic Lens differentiates real digital images from deepfakes
According to a 2022 study, human portraits created by artificial intelligence have now crossed the strange valley, which means that we are now more likely to think that a fake face is real than an authentic one. Synthetic media – photos and videos created by technology – are now so advanced and widespread that deepfakes are no longer just the work of expert digital artisans. Thispersondoesnotexist.coma “random face generator” site, shows this phenomenon, evoking images of real-looking people who don’t actually exist.
This worrying democratization synthetic media is the motivation behind Truepic Lens, a software development kit (SDK) that can fully integrate with applications that rely on images for their operations, allowing them to verify media in real time and provide assurances to customers. if necessary. Truepic also envisions a deeper cultural significance: restoring trust in a world plagued by misinformation. When something can be wrong, what can you trust? “We are now looking at this future of: how do we operate where synthetic media is accessible to everyone?” says Jeffrey McGregor, CEO of Truepic.
Truepic Lens, winner of the software category of Fast Company’s 2022 World Changing Ideas Awards, is a kit that businesses in all industries can install, “and give them that layer of trust,” McGregor says. In real time, Truepic Lens validates all metadata of an image, including time, date, location, and device, then cryptographically signs it and embeds the validation in the file. It provides this certification to businesses on the back-end, as well as customers if they so choose. It complies with C2PA, a new set of standards for content verification authenticity.
Although Truepic does not yet publish the names of its future business partners, it does provide some application examples. This could help Airbnb verify the host’s images, proving they’re not pulled from a Zillow listing; allow Uber to ensure that it advertises for real drivers; and reassure Bumble users that they are not being harassed. “The entire digital economy is at risk if trust evaporates,” McGregor says. Insurance companies will also be able to save time – and carbon emissions – by digitally substantiating people’s claims, instead of making in-person trips.
McGregor compares the system to a traditional notary and stresses the importance of Truepic being a neutral third party. He’s also hesitant to sell it directly to Apple or Android. They don’t just want to be available for the latest iPhone, “or that particular flavor of Android on that device,” he says. “You want it to be universal, across the whole ecosystem.”
Pre-SDK, Vision Truepic authenticated images using controlled capture technology, for which it won a World Changing Ideas award in 2019. In this original iteration, they primarily worked with financial services companies, but also enabled validation virtual PPP lending during the pandemic, and verifying footage of war crimes in conflict zones like Syria and Yemen, among a handful of journalists.
Now Lens is creating a way to scale all of these apps. “With Lens, we can take that same technology and put it into the BBC app,” says Mounir Ibrahim, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Truepic. “Anyone in the world, if they take a picture and send it to a bank, or take a picture and send it to The Hague, will be trustworthy.”
Beyond business, the company’s other ambitious goal is to recreate trust in a society teeming with polarization, much of which is due to rampant misinformation. “Truepic is not the arbiter of truth,” McGregor says. He can verify what is true and what is not, without weighing in on controversial political debates. “That general distrust that has permeated society,” Ibrahim adds, “is where we hope to be very, very impactful in the long run.”