Between advances in AI technology and blue checks for anyone willing to pay the monthly subscription fee, a lot is happening on social media. Today (May 22), one of the most guarded government buildings in the nation fell victim to a hoax. A viral tweet claimed there was a massive explosion at the Pentagon.
This morning, multiple verified Twitter accounts, including one claiming to be affiliated with Bloomberg News, shared the AI-generated image via social media. The possible bombing of the headquarters for the United States Department of Defense caused widespread panic that resulted in massive consequences. According to The New York Post, after the image of the Pentagon exploding was shared internationally, even the stock market saw the impact. The Dow Jones dropped 50 points, allegedly within minutes.
@PFPAOfficial and the ACFD are aware of a social media report circulating online about an explosion near the Pentagon. There is NO explosion or incident taking place at or near the Pentagon reservation, and there is no immediate danger or hazards to the public. pic.twitter.com/uznY0s7deL
— Arlington Fire & EMS (@ArlingtonVaFD) May 22, 2023
One major Indian television network even reported the incident and had a strategic expert join the broadcast to discuss the now-debunked bombing. In a statement to Forbes, a spokesperson for the United States Department of Defense called the image “misinformation.” The Arlington, Virginia Fire Department backed their claims, tweeting that they were “aware of a social media report circulating online about an explosion near the Pentagon. There is NO explosion or incident taking place at or near the Pentagon reservation, and there is no immediate danger or hazards to the public.”
The photo caused many to fear the future implications that could stem from situations like this one. “I think AI-fueled [misinformation] is going to become an exponentially larger issue in the coming years. Today, it’s a fake picture of a Pentagon explosion. Only a matter of time till someone posts a deep fake of our president declaring war on Russia or something vastly more harmful than what we saw here today,” one person tweeted.
See what others are saying about the hoax below.
Prime example of the dangers in the pay-to-verify system: This account, which tweeted a (very likely AI-generated) photo of a (fake) story about an explosion at the Pentagon, looks at first glance like a legit Bloomberg news feed. pic.twitter.com/SThErCln0p
— Andy Campbell (@AndyBCampbell) May 22, 2023
Earlier today an apparent AI-generated photo showed a fake explosion near the US Pentagon. The news was shared by Russian state-media RT on Twitter, which helped it go viral.
It was also tweeted by a verified Twitter account called “BloombegFeed” which has now been suspended.… pic.twitter.com/KN1wOptlRb
— Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) May 22, 2023
So @republic aired a 'Live & Breaking' news of Pentagon explosion image. They even invited Prof. Madhav Nalapat "strategic expert" to discuss about the explosion.
BWT, It was an AI generated image. pic.twitter.com/8j1nfSJR6x
— Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) May 22, 2023
This morning, an AI generated image of an explosion at the US Pentagon surfaced.
With multiple news sources reporting it as real, the S&P 500 fell 30 points in minutes.
This resulted in a $500 billion market cap swing on a fake image.
It then rebounded once the image was… pic.twitter.com/DpHgflkMXP
— The Kobeissi Letter (@KobeissiLetter) May 22, 2023
Eyewitnesses refute reports of an explosion at the Pentagon
Washington Post correspondent Yunus Paksoy posted a photo to prove that there was no explosion at the Pentagon. pic.twitter.com/E5mABXgFzR
— Spriter (@Spriter99880) May 22, 2023
Confident that this picture claiming to show an "explosion near the pentagon" is AI generated.
Check out the frontage of the building, and the way the fence melds into the crowd barriers. There's also no other images, videos or people posting as first hand witnesses. pic.twitter.com/t1YKQabuNL
— Nick Waters (@N_Waters89) May 22, 2023
A fake Bloomberg account with a Verified Blue Check on Twitter posted an apparently AI-generated picture of an explosion at the Pentagon this morning 😳👀 pic.twitter.com/9sPkkAfIot
— Daily Loud (@DailyLoud) May 22, 2023
Whoa, did you hear what happened this morning? An AI-generated image of an explosion at the US Pentagon spread like wildfire! The S&P 500 even took a hit, dropping 30 points in a matter of minutes. But get this – the image was fake! As in, totally bogus. And now people are… pic.twitter.com/KkYkT73xgw
— Jewels Jones (@JewelsJonesLive) May 22, 2023
I think AI fueled disinformation is going to become an exponentially larger issue in the coming years. Today it's a fake picture of a Pentagon explosion. Only a matter of time till someone posts a deepfake of our president declaring war on Russia or something vastly more harmful… pic.twitter.com/eXbkuKcrtx
— David Hanlin (@thelaptoplegend) May 22, 2023
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