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Dutch among least gullible in Europe about online info – DutchNews.nl

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The Dutch are most likely to doubt the truthfulness of information they encounter on the internet, and who verify the information when they do, a survey into internet use by statistics agency CBS has shown.

The CBS probe is part of a European-wide survey into false online information and the action people undertake when they are confronted with it.

In 2023 67% of 6,500 participants aged 12 and over said they had encountered what they thought was false information compared to 63% in 2021. Over half said they had found the information on social media while a quarter said they had read it on news sites.

Some 76% of people with a hbo or university education had doubts about what they had read online compared to 57% of people with a basic trade school diploma.

Of the people who had doubts about the information, 66% said they went on to verify it elsewhere. Over 80% said they would go to other news sites or Wikipedia and half said they would check the information at source.

Some 30% said they spoke about what they had seen with others offline or sought to find out more about it offline. Around 20% said they did not do anything.

Of the European countries that participated in the survey, the Netherlands had the highest percentage of people who thought online information was false or who had doubts about its veracity (71%), closely followed by Finland with 70%.

Romania had the most trusting population only three in 10 doubting what they had been told. The European average was 49%.

The Netherlands also had by far the highest percentage of people who checked the information. Almost half (46%) of all respondents either checked at source, discussed the matter with others, or  consulted other sites. In runner-up Finland just 26% of people who thought they were given false information tried to find out if it is was true or not.

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