Recently, there was controversy about a doctored photograph showing four Iranian missiles launching, whereas the original apparently showed three and one on the ground. Errol Morris discussed the images on the website of the New York Times.
Photo and video editing are nothing new, but some new software seeks to make the former much easier. It combines video data with that from still photographs in order to accomplish many possible aims. For instance, it could be used to improve the resolution of a whole scene or elements within it. It could also correct for over- and under-exposed regions. Of course, it could also facilitate video manipulation. The skills and software required to edit still images are increasingly available. Combine that with this software and you could empower a slew of new video fraudsters.
It will be interesting to see what kind of countermeasures emerge from organizations concerned about data integrity. One route is forensic – identifying markers of manipulation and tools for uncovering them. Another relies on requiring technologies and techniques for those capturing and submitting video. That could involve the expectation of multiple independent photos and videos produced from different angles using different equipment, or perhaps the widespread deployment of timestamps and cryptographic hashing to strengthen data integrity.