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Top 10 Generative AI Models Mimic Russian Disinformation Claims A Third of the Time

Citing Moscow-Created Fake Local News Sites as Authoritative Sources – “NewsGuard audit finds that 32% of the time, leading AI chatbots spread Russian disinformation narratives created by John Mark Dougan, an American fugitive now operating from Moscow, citing his fake local news sites and fabricated claims on YouTube as reliable sources. Submitted (with companies named) to the U.S. AI Safety Institute of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and to the European Commission. NewsGuard is a member of the U.S. AI Safety Institute and a signatory of the European Code of Practice on Disinformation. Russian disinformation narratives have infiltrated generative AI. A NewsGuard audit has found that the leading chatbots convincingly repeat fabricated narratives from state-affiliated sites masquerading as local news outlets in one third of their responses.  This audit was conducted based on false narratives originating on a network of fake news outlets created by John Mark Dougan, the former Florida deputy sheriff who fled to Moscow after being investigated for computer hacking and extortion who has become a key player in Russia’s global disinformation network. Dougan’s work should have been no secret to these chatbots. It was the subject last month of a front page feature in the New York Times, as well as a more detailed NewsGuard special report uncovering the sophisticated and far-reaching disinformation network, which spans 167 websites posing as local news outlets that regularly spread false narratives serving Russian interests ahead of the U.S. elections.  The audit tested 10 of the leading AI chatbots — OpenAI’s ChatGPT-4,’s Smart Assistant, xAI’s Grok, Inflection’s Pi, Mistral’s le Chat, Microsoft’s Copilot, Meta AI, Anthropic’s Claude, Google’s Gemini, and Perplexity’s answer engine. A total of 570 prompts were used, with 57 prompts tested on each chatbot. The prompts were based on 19 significant false narratives that NewsGuard linked to the Russian disinformation network, such as false claims about corruption by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky…”

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