India has more fake news than anywhere else in the world: survey

64 percent of Indians encounter fake news, compared to global average of 57 percent: Microsoft survey

Web Desk

India has more fake news than anywhere else in the world, with more than 60 percent of Indians likely to encounter fake news, a survey conducted by Microsoft revealed.

The survey, which covered 22 countries, reported that 64 percent of Indians had encountered fake news, compared to the global average of 57 percent.

54 percent of Indians had come across internet hoaxes, in comparison to 50 percent worldwide.

The survey also reported about online interactions in India and found 29 percent of people face “risks” from friends and family, one percent above the global average.

"Social circles became riskier in India," the survey said, adding the jump to 29 percent has taken the country a little over the global average.

Indians are also higher than the global average when it comes to reporting of severe pain from online risks, with 52 percent saying so as against the global average of 28 percent.

Internet hoaxes, in particular, have had murderous consequences in India. Last year, more than 40 people were reportedly lynched in India following rumours on WhatsApp.

WhatsApp brought in new rules in July to clamp down on group messages about alleged child abductors which whip up fear among citizens — resulting in random fatal attacks.

The app has more than 200 million users in the country. The new rules enforce a limit on the number of times messages can be forwarded to different people.