Four tricks for spotting fake news
1 Check the author
Before you share a post, take a close look at the author's profile. If they just recently appeared, that's suspicious. A low number of followers/friends can also be a telltale that it's a bot. In particular, check their previous posts, including temporal and content consistency. If a user has not been verified yet, the blue verification checkmark is missing.
2 Check the images
The reverse image search on Google helps you spot fakes quickly. To do so, simply enter the URL of the image on Google. This lets you quickly verify whether an attack has occurred, for example, or whether a bot has simply stolen an old image from the Internet. In the latter case, the website where the picture was published previously will also appear in the search results. Street signs and license plates often provide information as well. If a celebrity has allegedly been spotted in New York, for example, but a car with a British license plate can be seen in the background or an outdoor clock shows a completely different time, the fake news is easy to spot.
3 Check the publisher information
In addition to social media, of course, fake news is often published on independent websites as well. In this case, checking the publisher's information, which is required in Germany, is a good first step. It gives you an impression of the originator. If no publisher information is provided, then you shouldn't trust the site.
4 Check the URL
In some cases, fake news takes the form of an entire copied website. You might think you're on Spiegel Online, for example, because the site looks exactly like Spiegel Online. But in fact, someone has simply copied the design. To spot such fakes, take a closer look at the URL. In many cases, only individual letters are different, or the domain extension.