Huawei and Alibaba among Companies Seeking Chinese Deepfake Approvals

REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo
An AI (Artificial Intelligence) sign is seen at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai, China July 6, 2023.

BEIJING, Sept 1 (Reuters) – China’s cyberspace regulator has received 110 applications from Chinese technology companies such as Huawei HWT.UL and Alibaba 9988.HK for approvals related to models that can be used to manipulate visual and audio data.

The firms, according to a list published on Friday by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), are seeking the approvals to comply with rules set out in December by the CAC that govern the use of deepfake technology.

This approval process is separate from the CAC’s regulation of Chinese tech firms looking to push out generative artificial intelligence (AI) products, which have been in high demand ever since the success of U.S. firm OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Five Chinese tech firms, including Baidu Inc 9888.HK and SenseTime Group 0200.HK, on Thursday launched AI chatbots to the public after receiving government approval.

Unlike chatbots, which generate entirely new text, images and audio based on prompts from the user, deepfakes use AI technology to generate visual and audio data that is virtually indistinguishable from the original, and easily used for manipulation or misinformation.