Fake News with AI Please: Spies will soon be a history of the past and the CIA seems to know it. Dawn Meyerriecks, Deputy Director for Technology Development at the Office, recently said at a conference in Florida that the CIA is adapting to a new landscape where its primary rival is machinery rather than foreign agents.
Meyerriecks, speaking at CNN after the conference, said that many countries have used the AI to track down enemy agents for years.
He continued to explain the difficulties faced by today's CIA spies when trying to live under a covert identity in the era of digital surveillance and social networks, indicating that the modern world is becoming a very inhospitable environment for the spies we knew.
But the CIA will not give up. America's oldest information service is beginning to transform itself and instead of using people around the world to gather information, it uses computers to produce the same work even more efficiently.
This transition from people to computers is something the CIA processes and prepares for more than 30 years.
Government documents of 1984 (!) Describe an "AI steering group", which was established the previous year (1983). The team was responsible for providing monthly reports to CIA chiefs describing the state of the art intelligence and research.
In a declassified 1984 note (PDF) to the director of the CIA, the chairman of the AI steering group states:
An encouraging number of AI R&D efforts have been launched through the Community. They include areas such as expert systems, language processing, intelligent data base interfaces, image comprehension, signal interpretation, geographic and spatial data management as well as intelligent workstations.
So the CIA seems to be dealing with AI technology when most of us thought it was science fiction.
This document requires more training for agents, emphasis on supporting AI developers in both academic and professional environments, and the creation of an open-source clearinghouse for exchange of information by government agencies.
Today's spies face the same problem that yesterday faced: the need to be invisible.
What has changed is the opponent. So instead of having to fool people with fake documents and misinformation, agents should fool computers that can identify a particular person to the crowd. As you can see here, Fake News now acquires another dimension. Fake News for disinformation of the opponent, to conceal identity, but also to store information that favors.
According to Meyerriecks, at least 30 countries have the ability to do so with current CCTV camera systems. This means that too many AI tools now have the upper hand in the international game of concealing and searching the global information community.
We always believed that spies like James Bond had the coolest gadgets. But apparently, the time has come for gadgets to replace James Bond himself.