A recent survey by cybersecurity provider Netskope has revealed that a lot of people struggle to distinguish between real news stories and those generated by AI. Despite their confidence in spotting fake news, many individuals were unable to identify AI-generated stories as fake, highlighting the challenge of differentiating between real and fake information online.
The survey showed that people in the US and the UK, when presented with a fake AI news story alongside a real one, were often unable to determine which was fake. The respondents claimed to use social media as their main source of news, with newspapers and tabloids being the most trusted news sources. However, video-based platforms like TikTok and Snapchat came in second as the most trusted sources, showing a preference for visual media.
Furthermore, Netskope conducted research to identify the most widespread fake news stories and photos of 2023 based on social views and engagement. The top items included an image of Pope Francis wearing an oversized white puffer coat, which garnered over 20 million views on social media and was covered by more than 300 media publications. Another widely circulated fake image depicted Donald Trump being arrested in Washington DC, amassing over 10 million views on Twitter and being featured by 671 news publications.
These examples demonstrate how easily deceptive images and videos can fool people, with AI tools making it increasingly challenging to discern between real and fake content. Netskope highlighted the potential impact of fake news stories and images, as they can take an average of six days to be identified as fake.
In response to the prevalence of fake news, Netskope provided tips and tricks to help people detect real versus phony content. These include checking the original source of a news story, examining image proportions and details, and scrutinizing the size and subtitles of videos.
Overall, the rise of AI-generated fake news poses a significant challenge for individuals and news publishers alike, making it more important than ever to critically evaluate the information we encounter online.