KT Connections Blog

KT Connections has been serving the Rapid City area since 1997, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

How Fake News Can Influence Business

How Fake News Can Influence Business

Information is one of the most valuable assets available to businesses, but to be fair, there’s an awful lot of falsified information found on the Internet. Due to the increased focus on data acquisition and dissemination, false information is more harmful and easy to manipulate than ever before. The thing about this is that “fake news” is actually reliant on technology to work.

Your Relationship with Fake News
Research suggests that cyber propaganda generally requires three factors in order to be successful. The first includes the tools and services used to create the propaganda. The second is a platform to share it, such as social media. The third is a motivation behind the campaign itself--also known as why it’s being implemented itself. Without any of these three, spreading false information becomes difficult at best.

The problem here is that all of these have become plentiful in the past few years, allowing fake news campaigns to take off.

The Dark Web is close to the ideal solution for those hoping to spread vitriol, hate, and propaganda across the web. Social media allows stories with little-to-no substance to spread like wildfire due to some people’s goal to share and spread information regardless of the truth. Fake news itself has been used as a political tool, but it can be used to influence stocks, public opinion, and other variables.

China Has a Fake News Marketplace
Fake news can be found easily enough in marketplaces. The one we’ll discuss is Xiezuobang, a content distribution service in China. This service charges a user based on where the article has been published, which makes it very easy to abuse. If the user is taking advantage of systems that allow public opinions to be measured and modified, posts can be shared out on 3000 websites as frequently as 100 posts a minute.

These tactics can be used to flood Chinese social networks with posts from influential users who have dumped their own funds into promoting their content. The user’s popularity will eventually determine the price of the of the content sharing service.

The Global Issue
These practices are not limited to just China. In fact, researchers have collected information from various disinformation campaigns in the United States, Russia, and Middle Eastern countries, all of which help them identify trends in how these tools are used and what types of campaigns have been formed.

Regardless of where you’re located, you need to be on the lookout for cyber propaganda and fake news, be it politically motivated or for business-manipulation. After all, fake news can only stand to benefit those who spread it.

What is your opinion on this disturbing and emerging trend? Let us know in the comments.

 

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