The study noted that these deepfake images could be used as a form of disinformation, aiming to downplay or cover up events, for example, if a village has been destroyed, or natural disasters like wildfires or floods.
“A satellite image is just like any other image,” said Sam Gregory, programme director at Witness, a human rights video and technology network.
“You can create a satellite image that never existed … you could also manipulate an element within a satellite image.”
The idea of manipulating a map has been done throughout history, such as during wars when governments or authorities were trying to deceive their enemies.
But Gregory argues that manipulated maps hold the same dangers as other deepfake content.
“Authoritarian governments and governments will manipulate images and claim something happened when it didn’t,” he told The Cube, Euronews’ social media newsdesk.