7 out of 10 Spaniards believe that “fake news” can alter election results
- S2 Grupo warns that cybersecurity is an important factor in elections. In addition to the fact that technology supports an important part of the electoral process and could be intervened by a cybercriminal, fake news can affect the voting decisions of citizens
- The team of experts from S2 Grupo has highlighted some tips that can help voters avoid falling into the trap of fake news as not giving credibility to shocking headlines if they do not come from well-known sources
Valencia, April 15, 2019.- The Valencian company S2 Grupo has warned that cybersecurity is a very important factor to take into account in elections. In this sense, the company, which has extensive experience in applying cybersecurity processes in elections, has highlighted that the main risks are two: cyber-attacks and fake news. In this way, first and foremost and because a large part of the electoral process is supported by technology, it is necessary to apply adequate security measures to the systems to prevent the possible access of cybercriminals to access the results and manipulate them, for example. On the other hand, the opinions of citizens are essential when voting and currently one of the most common ways to influence them is through "fake news". The speed with which false news spreads over the Internet, mainly in social networks, is being used by cybercriminals to carry out more sophisticated attacks and that can have greater impact in electoral times. "We have already seen in the US or Catalonia how false news have contributed to destabilizing or influencing electoral processes. They can be used to generate opinions against or in favor and, therefore, influence the results. Fake news has become one of the main challenges of cybersecurity today", explained Miguel A. Juan, managing-partner of S2 Grupo. In fact, 69.5% of Spaniards believe that false news can affect election results, according to a survey conducted by the cybersecurity company through his blog Hijosdigitales.es. "Nowadays, behind a spread of false news a cyber-attack is probably being orchestrated and it is important to be aware of this because as we share those news and make them viral, we can be collaborating unknowingly with a cybercrime group", said José Rosell, managing-partner of S2 Grupo. To avoid as much as possible, falling into the trap of fake news, the team of experts from S2 Grupo has given some recommendations that can be of help to voters:
- Always be informed through legitimate means, whose headquarters, editorial team, etc. are known. On the Internet, digital media can proliferate, whose authorship is unknown and which have been created simply to discredit.
- Do not give credibility to messages that come from unknown sources.
- Be very careful with information shared on Social Networks if it does not come from official sources.
- Become aware of what information is shared, where it comes from and be sure it is credible. This will avoid contributing to campaigns orchestrated by cybercriminals sharing content of dubious origin.
- Do not take the bait of fake news, which is to share very powerful content simply because of the headline that appears.
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