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Microsoft warns, “China will spread AI manipulation information in the Korean general election” – Chosun Ilbo VRESP TODAY

A representative example of content manipulating public opinion in Korea contained in a report released by the Microsoft Threat Analysis Center (MTAC) on the 4th. A cartoon character depicting an octopus is criticized for discharging Japan’s Fukushima contaminated treated water. MTAC analyzed that this content was created for the purpose of encouraging public opposition in Korea to the discharge of treated water./Microsoft MTAC Report

Microsoft (MS) of the United States released a report analyzing that China may intentionally spread artificial intelligence (AI)-manipulated information to Korea, the United States, and Taiwan to influence elections. The Microsoft Threat Analysis Center (MTAC) recently published a report titled ‘Same Target, New Tactics: East Asia’s Threat Organizations Use Unique Methods’, saying, “China is using artificial intelligence to influence the elections in Korea, the United States, and India this year.” “We will spread false and fabricated information,” he analyzed. MTAC analyzed cyber activities originating from China and North Korea last year and reported that they are using more sophisticated techniques to achieve their desired goals.

MTAC said that a Chinese organization named ‘Storm-1376’ intensively spread false and manipulated content generated by AI. They said they were active on 175 websites in 58 languages ​​and posted false information about the anti-China Lai Ching-de, who ran and won Taiwan’s presidential election earlier this year. MTAC also said that Storm 1376 “spread opinions in Korea opposing the discharge of contaminated water from Fukushima, Japan.” “In particular, it amplified the message of Lee Jae-myeong (then) candidate of the Democratic Party of Korea for the 2022 presidential election, who compared (the discharge of Fukushima contaminated treated water) to contaminated water terrorism and the Pacific War.”

In the report, MTAC stated that “Chinese cyber organizations will target citizens of India, South Korea, and the United States as they head to the polls this year,” adding, “China is creating AI content that favors its position in these high-profile elections. “It is expected to amplify,” he predicted. According to MTAC, China actually intensively spread false and manipulated content generated by AI during Taiwan’s presidential election held last January. Taiwan’s elected president Lai Ching-de used AI news anchors to spread false information that he embezzled national treasury or that he had an illegitimate child. Candidate Guo Taiming, who ran as an independent candidate but then withdrew, also posted a fake audio file saying that he supported one of the remaining candidates.

It is said that Korea, which is holding a general election on the 10th, was also one of the main targets. MTAC explained that Storm 1376, in relation to the discharge of Fukushima contaminated treated water, “made efforts to target Korea with localized content that amplifies the protests against the discharge of Fukushima contaminated treated water taking place in Korea and content critical of the Japanese government.” The report analyzed that Storm 1376 is also spreading conspiracy theories or raising questions that promote division through social media in the United States ahead of the presidential election in November.

MTAC warned that we must also be alert to cyber threats from North Korea. “North Korean cyber threat actors stole hundreds of millions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency in 2023, conducted software supply chain attacks, and targeted what they perceive as national security enemies,” MTAC said. MTAC analyzed that North Korea’s cyber organization has targeted the aerospace and defense organizations of the United States and South Korea and is conducting surveillance activities and stealing information from experts in the government, research institutes, and media.

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