Communications and Technology

The FCC, AI Deepfakes, and Robocalls: Jake Morabito on NewsNation

"For the lawmakers I would recommend start with ALEC approach. Do something that will tangibly have results for everyday consumers and Americans, protect them and allow them to still benefit from innovation."

Jake Morabito, ALEC Communications & Technology Task Force Director, was interviewed by Natasha Zouves of NewsNation on the proper policy response to AI-generated robocalls and deepfakes, following the nonconsensual, explicit and abusive deepfake images of pop singer Taylor Swift. Morabito emphasized the importance of existing regulations and how ALEC model policy can be utilized.

There is plenty of existing regulation already on the books at the state and federal level to tackle some issues like this. So, the FCC was using a law from the 1990s targeting automated calls like this. The FCC is clarifying that yes, if AI is used to perpetuate scam robocalls in this fashion, they should be covered. There have been over 200 bills introduced at the state level on artificial intelligence — and at the federal level as well — taking a look at how and whether AI should be regulated.

One important thing to notice is that although it gets a lot of attention when A-list celebrity like Taylor Swift or Tom Cruise a couple of years ago — when they are the victims — it’s actually everyday Americans, even minors and high school children who have fallen victim to this. So, at the American Legislative Exchange Council, ALEC, we have model legislation to make a small prescriptive fix to the law and clarify that if criminals are abusing victims in this way, that they should be held accountable and held to the fullest extent of the law.

Watch the full interview.