Jen Destefano Gets a Phone Call
that Would Panic Any Parent

When a mother hears “Mom” and the sound of crying, it doesn’t matter if it’s AI or a good mimic.

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Jen Destefano’s story made national news. Her daughter Brie was abducted and the kidnappers let them speak to each other to prove it. But while they had demands for big money, they didn’t actually have her daughter. Was it a deepfake, a really good actor or a prank taken way too far?  

AI is really unnecessary to commit most of the scams we see these days, but that isn’t to say it isn’t being used–and while we tend to be underwhelmed by AI so far, Travis points out that it may well be better than we know. So, a mystery this week as we explore the kidnapping that never was facilitated by the AI that may or may not have been used.

“What the Hack with Adam Levin” is available wherever you get your podcasts. If you like it, consider rating us on your favorite podcast service or writing a review. It really helps people find the show.

About the Hosts

Adam Levin is the former Director of Consumer Affairs for the State of New Jersey, serial entrepreneur and author of Swiped, which he wrote with his sidekick, writer and cyber mensch, Beau Friedlander. With expert commentary from Travis “Here’s What Actually Happened” Taylor, the show gets everything sorted out—or not—but either way you’re going to have a great time. Something weird happen to you? We’ve got your back.


What the Hack with Adam Levin is a production of Loud Tree Media and is executive produced by Adam Levin and Beau Friedlander and produced by Andrew Steven and Travis Taylor.

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