Fake News, Disinformation, and Deepfakes: Leveraging Distributed Ledger Technologies and Blockchain to Combat Digital Deception and Counterfeit Reality

Abstract—The rise of ubiquitous deepfakes, misinformation, disinformation, propaganda and post-truth, often referred to as fake news, raises concerns over the role of Internet and social media in modern democratic societies. Due to its rapid and widespread diffusion, digital deception has not only an individual or societal cost (e.g., to hamper the integrity of elections), but it can lead to significant economic losses (e.g., to affect stock market performance) or to risks to national security. Blockchain and other Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLTs) guarantee the provenance, authenticity and traceability of data by providing a transparent, immutable and verifiable record of transactions while creating a peer-to-peer secure platform for storing and exchanging information. This overview aims to explore the potential of DLTs and blockchain to combat digital deception, reviewing initiatives that are currently under development and identifying their main current challenges. Moreover, some recom- mendations are enumerated to guide future researchers on issues that will have to be tackled to face fake news, disinformation and deepfakes, as an integral part of strengthening the resilience against cyber-threats on today’s online media.

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