New AI tool detects Deepfakes by analyzing light reflections in the eyes

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Deepfakes are used for a variety of nefarious purposes, from disinformation campaigns to inserting people into porn, and the doctored images are increasingly difficult to detect.

A new artificial intelligence tool offers a surprisingly easy way to spot them: look at the light reflected in the eyes.

The system was created by computer scientists at the University of Buffalo. When testing portrait-style photos, the tool was 94% effective at detecting deepfake images.

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The system exposes the fakes by scanning the corneas, which have a mirror-like surface that generates reflective patterns when illuminated with light.

In a photo of a real face taken by a camera, the reflection on both eyes will be similar because they are seeing the same thing. But the Deepfake images synthesized by GANs generally fail to accurately capture this resemblance.

Instead, they often have inconsistencies, such as different geometric shapes or inconsistent locations of reflections.

The corneal regions show much sharper differences in the deepfake image (right), possibly because they are generated by combining many photos.
Credit: Lyu et. at