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Source. Question the source. Check on official websites if stories are repeated there. If a source is “a friend of a friend”, this is a rumour unless you also know the person directly. Even academic work can be skewed and subject to bias, as this article about Google paying for favourable articles shows
Read Beyond. Be wary if the message presses you to share – this is how viral messaging works
Author. Who are they?. Are they reputable?. Do they have history?. Are they real?.
Logo: Check whether any logo used in the message looks the same as on the official website.
Bad English: Credible journalists and organisations are less likely to make repeated spelling and grammar mistakes. This UNESCO journalist guide to fake news training gives good guidance .
Fake social media accounts: Some fake accounts mimic the real thing. For example, where the unofficial Twitter handle @BBCNewsTonight, which had been made to look like the legitimate @BBCNews account, shared a fake story about the actor Daniel Radcliffe testing positive for Coronavirus
Check The Date. Old articles or photographs are reposted in the hope that they cause a stir but they have no relevance the story. This was seen recently with a Twitter photo of the New Zealand Prime Minister: NZ PM Twitter Photo Furore
Ask Experts. Use a site like FactCheck.org where you can do your own detective work and feel more confident in being able to identify fact vs. Fiction..