Ensuring Trust in the Digital Age: Government Initiatives Against Deepfake

Mr. Neeraj Soni
Mr. Neeraj Soni
Researcher - Policy & Advocacy, CyberPeace
Nov 28, 2023


In the new age of technologies the internet and social media continue to witness a surge in deepfake videos a technological phenomenon that blurs the line between reality and fiction. The string of deepfake videos of Bollywood actors and other famous personalities has raised serious concerns. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke against the risks of artificial intelligence at the G20 Virtual Summit. The central government has recently announced that it will soon set up dedicated regulations to tackle this Menace. This will include holding social media platforms and creators responsible for their actions against the rules and regulations. Very often most people shy away from initiating a legal process or taking action while being victims of misuse of fast-paced tech but the government has announced its big support to the victims and promised to stand by complaints against deepfake videos especially this includes helping individuals to report the incidents and any violations by platforms.

Social media platforms to realign their policies as per the Indian laws

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) announced on 24th November 2023 that it will be giving social media platforms seven days time period to align their terms of service and other policies with Indian laws and regulations in order to address the issue of hosting of deepfakes on these platforms. All platforms must align and transform their terms of use with their users to be consistent with the 12 areas that are prohibited under rule 3(1)(b) of the Information Technology (IT) Rules, 2021.

The platforms will ensure harmonization and alignment of their terms & policies so that every user on every platform is aware that when they use a platform the platform intends to be a safe and trusted platform and the platform will not tolerate these 12 types of content or information that have been prohibited under the IT Act and the IT rules. The government approach is to collectively advocate for responsible and safe use of the Internet. The government has taken a proactive step in partnership with these social media platforms to ensure an era where such platforms will be a lot more responsible and a lot more responsive to the expectations under the law and more compliant.

Officer to be appointed under rule 7 

As Deepfake Videos continue to surface on social media, the Government has geared up to curb such content online. Mr. Rajeev Chandrasekhar Minister of State, (Meity), stated that the government will soon appoint an officer to take appropriate action against deepfake videos. This statement came after the government meeting with industry stakeholders and important players held on 24 Nov 2023. He added that Meity and the government of India will nominate an officer under rule 7  (IT rules 2021) and will ensure full compliance expectations from all the platforms. An officer appointed under Rule 7,  will be entrusted with building a mechanism where users can put in their complaints regarding deepfakes and MeitY may also assist such aggrieved users with filing FIRs in such cases. Mr. Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State, (Meity) also added that we will also be creating a platform where it will be very easy for netizens to bring to the attention of the government of India and notices of allegations or reports of violation of law by the platforms and the rule 7 officer will take that digital platform information and respond accordingly. 

The Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (updated as on 6.4.2023)

Rule 3(1)(b) states that intermediaries shall inform its rules and regulations, privacy policy and user agreement to the user and shall make reasonable efforts to ‘restrict’ the users from hosting, displaying, uploading, modifying, publishing, transmitting, store, update or sharing any information that is prohibited under this rule which also includes deepfake, misinformation, CSAM(Child sexual abusive material) etc.  As per rule 3(2)(b) Intermediaries shall remove or disable access within 24 hours of receipt of complaints of contents that expose the private areas of individuals, show such individuals in full or partial nudity or in a sexual act or is in the nature of impersonation including morphed images etc. 

Ongoing Efforts Ahead of Crucial Meeting with Tech Giants

Ahead of the government meeting with online platforms such as Google, Facebook, and YouTube on Friday, 24th November 2023, Mr. Rajeev Chandrasekhar Minister of State, (Meity) added that way back from October 2022 the government of India had been alerting them to the threat of misinformation and deepfakes which are part of misinformation. He further added that the current IT rules under the IT Act provide for adequate compliance requirements on their part to deal with deepfake.

Deepfake Misinformation

Misinformation powered by AI becoming an even more potent force to disrupt and to mislead and to create chaos and confusion at a scale and of a type that is deeply detrimental. Deepfakes in a very simple basic way is misinformation which is powered by or enhanced by AI. Video-based deepfake misinformation is more dangerous since it has a greater reach as video consumption today is the preferred choice by users on the internet.

Way forward

The Honorable Prime Minister has raised the issue that deep fakes are deeply disruptive they can create divisions and all kinds of disruptions in communities, in families and therefore misuse of deepfake technology is a very clear present danger to the safe and trusted internet.

The Government is on its way to draft a dedicated legislation dedicated to tackling deepfakes.

Even as we speak to a future regulation and a future law which is certainly required given that our IT Act is 23 years old. However current IT rules provide for compliance requirements by the platforms on misinformation patently false information and deepfakes. Followed by the recent government advisory on misinformation and deepfake.


Prime Minister alerting of the dangers of deepfakes online. The government is now in the process of starting to look very seriously into this issue and also issued guidelines for intermediaries and in a finite period of time it is hoped that the threat of deep fakes would actually no longer exist in in our system. The government made it clear that apart from people spreading deepfake videos, the platforms making them spread and not taking action will also be liable they are currently liable and will be even more so in future after new rules and regulations are brought in.


Nov 28, 2023
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