IT Minister Sets 7-Day Deadline for Social Media Platforms Regarding Deepfakes

“Officer will be appointed to ensure action against deepfake content,” he said after meeting social media companies.

New Delhi: 

Amid consternation and outrage over a series of deepfake videos on social media, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar today said that the Centre will soon appoint an officer to take appropriate action against such content.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar said the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (Meity) will develop a website on which users can flag their concerns about IT rule violation. “Meity will assist users to notify it about violation of IT rules and assist them in filing a First Information Report or FIR,” the Union Minister said.

The FIR will be registered against the intermediary and if they disclose the details from where the content has originated then the case will be filed against the entity that has posted the content, the minister said.

Mr. Chandrasekhar affirmed that the current laws and regulations include explicit provisions to address Deepfake issues.

He conveyed that social media platforms now have a seven-day period to bring their terms of use into alignment with the IT rules. Mr. Chandrasekhar emphasized a zero-tolerance approach for any violations of IT rules starting from today.

In the previous week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised concerns about the misapplication of artificial intelligence (AI) in the creation of deepfake videos, labeling it as a significant issue. He stressed the importance of responsible technology use during the era of Artificial Intelligence.

The Centre has said that the creation and circulation of deepfakes carry a strong penalty ₹ 1 lakh in fine and three years in jail.

The videos have sparked massive worry about fake videos targeting public figures and the power of AI to create deepfakes that can mislead the world.

The revelation sparked concerns over the ramifications of such tinkering, especially for public figures, who may get in trouble over visuals their faces are doctored into.

Earlier this month, Meity issued an advisory to social media platforms, emphasizing the legal provisions addressing deepfakes and the potential penalties associated with their creation and dissemination. Mr. Chandrasekhar stressed that preventing the spread of misinformation is a “legal obligation” for online platforms.

The statement directed online platforms to promptly remove any reported content within 36 hours, ensuring swift action in compliance with the stipulated timeframes under the IT Rules 2021. Additionally, the platforms were instructed to disable access to the content or information.

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