Misinformation: Not Everything is True
Written by Nav Sharma
“Falsehood flies and the truth comes limping after it.” – Jonathan Swift
Misinformation is false or misleading information that results from unintentional human errors and inaccuracy. In the modern 20th century, everything is available at the tip of our fingertips, and mobile phones have made our life frictionless. This lure of frictionless and easy life has tuned our brains to understand things most simply. This has also impacted how we consume knowledge and believe everything we read without fact-checking the source.
The internet is a potent tool where you can follow communities of like-minded people through social media applications like Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, Reddit and many more. There is so much information available that one tends to believe in the readily available statement without double-checking because it is a frictionless experience. Once we believe that an individual or community is giving the correct information, it spreads through a straightforward option, the share button. Every time the information is shared, it creates a new meaning with our own interpretations in the form of a caption.
During Covid-19, misinformation was spread via sources on Facebook that vaccines are killing people. CBC News interviewed DR. Goffi, and he mentioned that people are being brainwashed to believe that the vaccine contains poison, it is a tracking device, and it makes cows sterile. He also said that it was not a small group, but 80% of people were coming with these facts that they read on Facebook, and people were ready to die instead of getting a vaccine.
We all have read so many conspiracy theories and consumed so much information from various sources that it is hard to separate reality from what is being fed. Furthermore, it has also led to cybersecurity issues, and people are being blackmailed through these social media channels. If you are someone who feels like you might be susceptible to believing misleading information, here are some tips:
It is the same as preparing for an exam. If a concept is not clear, we go through diverse sources and find the most credible. Similarly, when we want to research a specific piece of information, we should go through scholarly resources and understand the primary meaning behind the information. You can search for help in a library database, Google Scholar and even your school library database.
Understand social media algorithm
Social media is designed in such a way that it makes a unique algorithm for every person. For example, if you search for fitness-related posts on Instagram, your feed will be flooded with fitness posts, or if you follow a specific trend on Twitter, it will show you similar information. It is always a clever idea to understand different algorithms, clear your feed every time you see it and be cautious of what you search for.
Only share information if you have complete faith in it and have cross-checked the information.
This is quite straightforward, only share information from a trusted source such as experts in the field who are in good standing and reputable news sources.
Stand up against misinformation
Whether in person or online, do not be afraid to stand up to misinformation and provide a reputable source for that person to learn more. There is so much information out there, yet we are all stuck in our echo chamber, so it is good to educate others and then let them educate you as well.
There is no single solution to stop misinformation, but the above steps can help you reduce the consumption and spread of misinformation. Furthermore, there are cybersecurity courses available at Technoedge Learning including CompTIA A+ training, Network+ training, and Security+ training, which can prepare you to find solutions to stop the spread of misinformation and protect others from cybersecurity threats.
The information contained in this post is considered true and accurate as of the publication date. However, the accuracy of this information may be impacted by changes in circumstances that occur after the time of publication. TechnoEdge Learning assumes no liability for any error or omissions in the information contained in this post or any other post in our blog.