The news you see online or on social media isn’t always going to be accurate. And it can be hard to tell what’s real and what’s fake.
Some websites will report fake news or things that aren’t completely true. They might do it because they want to scare you or make you do something. Or because they make money from people going to their site.
Fake news can look real, but there are ways to help you spot it.
- Check the source
Check the name of the website and its web address to see if it looks real. Some sites will try to look like other websites so you think they’re genuine.
- Look for evidence
Find out whether it’s being reported on other sites that you know and trust. If it’s only being reported on websites you’ve never heard of then it might not be true.
- Don’t decide straight away
Sometimes headlines or stories are designed to scare or interest you. Read what’s in the article carefully, ask yourself whether it seems true and why they’re saying it.
- Ask someone you trust
Try asking an adult you trust to see what they think. If you’re worried about something you’ve seen online, you can always talk to a Childline counsellor.