Google Sues Hackers Exploiting AI Hype With Alleged Bard Scams

Key Takeaways:

– Google has filed a lawsuit against fraudsters in Vietnam and India who placed fake ads for its generative AI tool, Bard, on Facebook.
– The ads asked users to download Bard, but the AI is a web-based product and doesn’t require downloading.
– Naive users who downloaded the malware ended up having their social media credentials stolen and their accounts compromised.
– Google aims to disable any current domains related to the scam and prevent the alleged fraudsters from setting up more.
– This lawsuit marks the first legal action taken to protect users of a major tech company’s flagship AI product.
– Google has filed around 300 takedowns of fake ads on Facebook, but the impact on users and the hackers’ motive remain unclear.
– The lawsuit highlights the hype around generative AI and the limited knowledge of these products among users.
– Google and other companies have implemented copyright infringement protections for generative AI products to ensure consumer confidence.
– In a separate lawsuit, Google sued bad actors who falsely used copyright law to take down over 100,000 businesses’ websites, costing them millions of dollars and lost employee time.
– The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), designed to protect users from copyright cases, has been misused in this instance, leading to overzealous content moderation.

Gizmodo:

Photo: Mojahid Mottakin (Shutterstock)

Ads for fake versions of Google’s generative AI tool, Bard, are showing up on Facebook to steal social media accounts of U.S. small businesses, according to a lawsuit from Google filed Monday.

The phony Facebook ads ask users to download Bard, but the AI doesn’t need to be downloaded – it’s a completely web-based product. Naive users actually downloaded malware that stole social media credentials and compromised their accounts. Google’s lawsuit aims to disable any current domains related to the trap and bar the alleged fraudsters, located in Vietnam and India, from setting up any more. This is considered the first lawsuit to protect users of a major tech company’s flagship AI product, Google’s general counsel Halimah DeLaine Prado said to the Wall Street Journal Monday.

Google filed roughly 300 takedowns of fake ads on Facebook, but it’s unclear how many users were impacted and what the hackers’ motive was. The lawsuit highlights the massive hype around generative artificial intelligence and limited knowledge of the actual products. Every day people are hoping to use products like Bard, and big tech is looking for AI safeguards to protect people from falling into traps like these.

“Today’s actions are part of our ongoing legal strategy to protect consumers and small businesses, and establish needed legal precedents in emerging fields of innovation,” said Google in a blog post Monday.

Google, OpenAI, and other companies have put forth broad copyright infringement protections, to instill confidence that consumers won’t face legal issues using generative AI products.

In a separate lawsuit also filed on Monday, Google sued a group of bad actors who abused copyright law to wrongly remove over 100,000 businesses’ websites, costing them millions of dollars and thousands of hours in lost employee time.

The bad actors filed bogus claims under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which allows for a website to take down content considered copyright infringement if it’s flagged by the rightful owner. Google sued dozens of accounts connected to these phony claims hurting small businesses in order to stop the activity and deter others. The DMCA was created to protect users from copyright cases, but overzealous content moderation has long been an issue for the provision.

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AI Eclipse TLDR:

Google has filed a lawsuit against fraudsters in Vietnam and India who used fake ads on Facebook to steal social media accounts of US small businesses. The ads claimed to offer a downloadable version of Google’s generative AI tool, Bard, when in fact the product is web-based. Naive users who downloaded the supposed software actually installed malware that compromised their social media credentials. Google aims to disable any related domains and prevent the alleged fraudsters from setting up further traps. The lawsuit seeks to protect users of Google’s flagship AI product and establish legal precedents in the field of AI innovation. The number of affected users and the hackers’ motives remain unclear. In a separate lawsuit, Google sued a group of bad actors who abused copyright law to wrongfully remove over 100,000 businesses’ websites, resulting in financial losses and lost employee time.