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Medanta Hospital Files Complaint  Over MD Naresh Trehan’s Deepfake Video

Written by : Aishwarya Sarthe

March 20, 2024

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Having filed a complaint at the Cyber East police station, an FIR was registered against unidentified individuals under sections 419 and 420.

Gurgaon-based Medanta Hospital has filed a formal complaint on a "deepfake" video featuring its esteemed chairperson and MD, Dr Naresh Trehan. 

The complaint was filed with the Cyber East police station, resulting in the registration of an FIR against unidentified individuals under sections 419 and 420 of the IPC.

The "deepfake" video purportedly shows Dr Trehan endorsing a weight loss drug. DCP (cybercrime) Siddhant Jain confirmed the registration of the FIR and stated that the Facebook link to the video was deactivated following the complaint.

The Allegations & Legal Action

According to Medanta Hospital's assistant VP for marketing, the circulation of such fabricated content poses a significant concern. 

In a statement, they remarked, "A fabricated video has surfaced on social media that contains misleading information about a medical treatment. The deep fake video features our CMD Dr Naresh Trehan, who can be seen endorsing this particular medication," adding that it tarnishes the reputation of both the hospital and Dr Trehan.

The complaint emphasizes the potential harm caused by the dissemination of false claims, particularly in healthcare. 

The 35-second video, it alleges, could induce panic and confusion among viewers by promoting purported breakthroughs in obesity treatment.

"I request you to take immediate action to remove the video from social media platforms and bring the perpetrators of this deceitful act to justice," the complainant urged.

Understanding Deepfake Technology

"Deepfake" technology uses AI, specifically deep learning, to digitally manipulate content, including audio, video, and images. 

Additionally, its nefarious applications often include the fabrication of misleading or false information.

Moreover, it serves as a potent tool for spreading misinformation across online platforms.

Preliminary Investigations & Government Response

DCP Jain disclosed that initial investigations suggest the video manipulated voice recordings of Dr Trehan and a news anchor. 

He affirmed that Dr Trehan had not endorsed any medication as depicted in the deepfake video. The specifics of the technology employed to create the fake video will be determined through further investigation.

"We have registered a case and started the investigation. A special team was formed to arrest the accused, and we already have credible leads regarding the same," Jain stated.

The incident underscores the growing threat deepfake technology poses and the urgent need for regulatory measures to address its proliferation. 

In a related development earlier this year, Union Minister of State for Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar announced plans for the central government to introduce regulations mandating social media platforms to combat deepfakes. 

Chandrasekhar highlighted the inadequacy of existing advisories, emphasizing the necessity of more robust measures to curb the spread of manipulated content.

The Medanta Hospital's response to the circulation of the deepfake video underscores the potential consequences of such deceptive practices in the healthcare sector. 

With the prevalence of digital misinformation, combating the spread of false medical information remains a critical challenge.

The investigation into the deepfake video involving Dr Naresh Trehan is ongoing, with authorities actively pursuing leads to identify and apprehend the perpetrators responsible for its creation and dissemination.


About Chime India

The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) is an executive organization dedicated to serving senior digital health leaders. CHIME includes more than 5,000 members in 56 countries and two US territories and partners with over 150 healthcare IT businesses and professional services firms. CHIME enables its members and business partners to collaborate, exchange ideas, develop professionally and advocate the effective use of information management to improve the health and care throughout the communities they serve. CHIME's members are chief information officers (CIOs), chief medical information officers (CMIOs), chief nursing information officers (CNIOs), chief innovation officers (CIOs), chief digital officers (CDOs), and other senior healthcare leaders. The CHIME India Chapter became the first international chapter outside North America in 2016 and is now a community of over 70+ members in India. For more information, please visit www.chimecentral.org

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