Deepfake Nudes: The DEFIANCE Act and Steps to Protect Yourself

I don’t know what’s more disturbing: the fact that Deepfake has such a large audience, or that when you search for “deepfake nudes,” a deepfake nude AI image generator with over 600k monthly traffic is the first result on the SERP. The fact that it’s so easy to find is very unsettling to me.

A little background on deepfake AI for those who are coming across this term for the first time: Deepfake AI is a type of artificial intelligence technology used to create or alter video, audio, or images to make them look and sound like real footage. It uses deep learning algorithms to analyze and manipulate existing videos or images, allowing for the creation of realistic but fake content. This technology has raised concerns because it can be used to produce convincing fake videos of people saying or doing things they never actually did.

Deepfake nude images are gaining ground faster than you think, and now, with the recent accessibility of AI tools, female celebrities are not the only targets. It could be a female friend, neighbor, sister, classmate, or it could even be you (if you’re female). The toll deepfake nude images could have on its victims could be very distressing. Women and girls are usually primary targets in deepfake cyberbullying cases, as happened at Westfield High School.

Deepfake nudes also cause significant levels of stress and anxiety, which can affect the quality of life in its victims. It can lead to thoughts about suicide and self-harm, damaging the mental health of victims. Other effects deepfake nudes pose for targets include identity threats, privacy concerns, reputation damage, loss of trust, financial blackmail, and challenges in authenticity. They are, as Daniel Detlaf likes to put it, Dark GPT.

Woman looking at computer screen and crying
Woman looking at computer screen and crying

Reading this may cause you to feel sorry for women who may fall prey to deepfake nudes or make you wonder if there are solutions to this issue. Raise your heads up; there’s hope! U.S. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has proposed the Defiance Act.

What’s the Defiance Act, you may ask? The Defiance Act is the Disrupt Explicit Forged Images and Non-Consensual Edits Act of 2024 (DEFIANCE Act). The legislation will create a federal civil right of action for victims of “digital forgery,” in which their likeness is created using software, machine learning, artificial intelligence, or any other computer-generated or technological means to falsely appear to be authentic.

In her own words, “The DEFIANCE Act will allow victims to finally defend their reputations and take civil action against individuals who produced, distributed, or received digital forgeries. I’m grateful to lead this legislation with Senator Dick Durbin, along with my Democratic and Republican colleagues in both the House and Senate.” The bill was introduced early in 2024, but it hasn’t been passed yet. I’m positive it will be passed soon, as everyone seems to agree it’s a good Act.

While we wait for the bill to be passed, you can still take matters into your own hands by suing the perpetrator, or you can visit and request for them to take down the picture from any online platform. But there’s a downside: it’s only available for women (adults 18+). And you don’t have to upload any pictures – how great is that? Spread the word, share this article as much as you can, and spread awareness about deepfake nudes; you can save a victim.