To end photomontages, fake news, and images manipulated for malicious purposes, Adobe is working on a research project that uses machine learning to detect photos edited with Photoshop.
Image editing tools are lovely when used for the right purposes, such as artistic or educational. Unfortunately, however, many users use them with the aim of deceiving others or spreading fake news with which to spread misinformation and even chaos.
The immediacy of the Internet and social networks is a perfect breeding ground for the rapid spread of hoaxes, lies that can sometimes have serious consequences.
However, even though a person may not be able to detect, at first glance, if an image has been manipulated with Photoshop, digital techniques can identify retouched photos. Thanks to artificial intelligence, these techniques can be automated to be carried out much more quickly and efficiently, and this is what the Adobe project is all about.
Adobe develops a machine learning system to detect images manipulated with Photoshop to fight against fake news
Vlad Morariu, a senior research scientist at Adobe and a member of the DARPA Media Forensics program, explains that they focus on three common manipulation techniques, namely, splicing, copy-moving, and deletion.
“Each of these techniques tends to leave certain artifacts, such as sharp edges, deliberately smoothed areas or different noise patterns. Although these clues are not easy for the human eye to detect, a thorough analysis of the pixel level or the application of filters makes them easy to identify,” explained Morariu.
The problem is that the work of a forensic expert requires time and expertise. On the other hand, the Adobe machine learning system can reduce the whole process to a matter of seconds.
The artificial intelligence can successfully identify which images have been manipulated, what type of manipulation has been used and is also able to highlight the specific area that has been modified in the photo.
As we said, the Adobe machine learning system to detect images manipulated with Photoshop is currently in its initial stages and does not yet have commercial applications, but, in the future, it could become an interesting tool against fake news.