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Deception or falsehood is an act or statement which misleads, hides the
truth Truth is the property of being in accord with fact A fact is something that is true True most commonly refers to truth Truth is the property of being in accord with fact or reality.Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionarytruth 2005 In ...

truth
, or promotes a belief, concept, or idea that is not true. It is often done for personal gain or advantage. Deception can involve dissimulation, propaganda and sleight of hand as well as distraction, camouflage or concealment. There is also
self-deception Self-deception is a process of denying or rationalizing away the relevance, significance, or importance of opposing evidence Evidence, broadly construed, is anything presented in support of an assertion, because evident things are undoubted. Th ...
, as in
bad faith Iago (right) and Othello from ''Othello'' by William Shakespeare. Much of the tragedy of the play is brought about by advice Iago gives to Othello in bad faith. Bad faith (Latin: ''mala fides'') is a sustained form of deception which consis ...
. It can also be called, with varying subjective implications, beguilement, deceit, bluff, mystification, ruse, or subterfuge. Deception is a major
relational transgression Relational transgressions occur when people violate implicit or explicit Interpersonal relationship, relational Norm (sociology), rules. These transgressions include a wide variety of behaviors. The boundaries of relational transgressions are perm ...
that often leads to feelings of
betrayal Betrayal is the breaking or violation of a presumptive contract A contract is a legally binding document between at least two parties that defines and governs the rights and duties of the parties to an agreement. A contract is legally enfor ...
and distrust between relational partners. Deception violates relational
rules Rule or ruling may refer to: Human activity * The exercise of political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and ...
and is considered to be a negative
violation Violation or violations may refer to: * Law violation * Violation (basketball), the most minor class of an illegal action in basketball * Bipolar violation, when two pulses of the same polarity occur without an intervening pulse of the opposite ...
of expectations. Most people expect friends, relational partners, and even strangers to be truthful most of the time. If people expected most conversations to be untruthful, talking and communicating with others would require distraction and misdirection to acquire reliable information. A significant amount of deception occurs between some
romantic Romantic may refer to: Genres and eras * The Romantic era, an artistic, literary, musical and intellectual movement of the 18th and 19th centuries ** Romantic music, of that era ** Romantic poetry, of that era ** Romanticism in science, of that er ...
and relational partners.Guerrero, L., Anderson, P., Afifi, W. (2007). Close Encounters: Communication in Relationships (2nd ed.). Los Angeles: Sage Publications. Deceit and dishonesty can also form grounds for civil litigation in
tort A tort, in common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or ) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ' is the most-used legal dict ...

tort
, or
contract law A contract is a legally binding agreement that defines and governs the rights and duties between or among its parties Image:'Hip, Hip, Hurrah! Artist Festival at Skagen', by Peder Severin Krøyer (1888) Demisted with DXO PhotoLab Clearview ...
(where it is known as
misrepresentation In common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ''Black's Law Dictionary' ...
or
fraudulent misrepresentation The tort of deceit is a type of legal injury that occurs when a person intentionally and knowingly deceives another person into an action that damages them. Specifically, deceit requires that the tortfeasor * makes a factual representation, * know ...
if deliberate), or give rise to criminal prosecution for
fraud In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by ...

fraud
. It also forms a vital part of
psychological warfare Psychological warfare (PSYWAR), or the basic aspects of modern psychological operations (PsyOp), have been known by many other names or terms, including Military Information Support Operations (MISO is a traditional Japanese seasoning ...
in denial and deception.


Types


Communication

Deception includes several types of communications or omissions that serve to distort or omit the whole truth. Examples of deception range from false statements to misleading claims in which relevant information is omitted, leading the receiver to infer false conclusions. For example, a claim that 'sunflower oil is beneficial to brain health due to the presence of omega-3 fatty acids' may be misleading, as it leads the receiver to believe sunflower oil will benefit brain health more so than other foods. In fact, sunflower oil is relatively low in omega-3 fatty acids and is not particularly good for brain health, so while this claim is technically true, it leads the receiver to infer false information. Deception itself is intentionally managing verbal or nonverbal messages so that the message receiver will believe in a way that the message sender knows is false.
Intent Intentions are mental states A mental state, or a mental property, is a state of mind of a person. Mental states comprise a diverse class including perception, pain experience, belief, desire, intention, emotion, and memory. There is controversy co ...
is critical with regard to deception. Intent differentiates between deception and an honest mistake. The
Interpersonal Deception Theory Interpersonal deception theory (IDT) attempts to explain how individuals handle actual (or perceived) deception at the conscious or subconscious level while engaged in face-to-face communication. The theory was put forth by Burgoon and Buller (1996 ...
explores the interrelation between communicative context and sender and receiver cognitions and behaviors in deceptive exchanges. Some forms of deception include: *
Lie A lie is an assertion that is believed to be false, typically used with the purpose of deception, deceiving someone. The practice of communicating lies is called lying. A person who communicates a lie may be termed a liar. Lies may serve a vari ...

Lie
s: making up information or giving information that is the opposite or very different from the truth. *
Equivocation In logic Logic (from Ancient Greek, Greek: grc, wikt:λογική, λογική, label=none, lit=possessed of reason, intellectual, dialectical, argumentative, translit=logikḗ)Also related to (''logos''), "word, thought, idea, argument, a ...
s: making an indirect, ambiguous, or contradictory statement. * Concealments: omitting information that is important or relevant to the given context, or engaging in behavior that helps hide relevant information. *
Exaggerations Exaggeration is the representation of something as more extreme or dramatic than it really is. Exaggeration may occur intentionally or unintentionally. Exaggeration can be a rhetorical device In rhetoric, a rhetorical device, persuasive devic ...
: overstatement or stretching the truth to a degree. * Understatements: minimization or downplaying aspects of the truth. * Untruths: misinterpreting the truth. Buller and Burgoon (1996) have proposed three taxonomies to distinguish motivations for deception based on their Interpersonal Deception Theory: * Instrumental: to avoid punishment or to protect resources * Relational: to maintain relationships or bonds * Identity: to preserve "face" or the self-image


Appearance

Simulation consists of exhibiting false information. There are three simulation techniques:
mimicry In evolutionary biology, mimicry is an evolved resemblance between an organism and another object, often an organism of another species. Mimicry may evolve between different species, or between individuals of the same species. Often, mimicry f ...

mimicry
(copying another model or example, such as non-poisonous snakes which have the colours and markings of poisonous snakes), fabrication (making up a new model), and distraction (offering an alternative model)


Mimicry

In the biological world, mimicry involves ''unconscious'' deception by similarity to another organism, or to a natural object. Animals for example may deceive predators or prey by
visual The visual system comprises the sensory organ A sense is a biological system A biological system is a complex network which connects several biologically relevant entities. Biological organization spans several scales and are determined b ...

visual
, or other means.


Fabrication

To make something that appears to be something that it is not, usually for the purpose of encouraging an adversary to reveal, endanger, or divert that adversary's own resources (''i.e.'', as a
decoy A decoy (derived from the Dutch ''de'' ''kooi'', literally "the cage" or possibly ''ende kooi'', " duck cage") is usually a person, device, or event which resembles what an individual or a group might be looking for, but not really is. Decoys ha ...

decoy
). For example, in
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
, it was common for the
Allies An alliance is a relationship among people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason Reason is the capacity of consciously applying ...
to use hollow tanks made out of wood to fool German
reconnaissance In military operations, reconnaissance or scouting is the exploration of an area by military forces to obtain information about enemy forces, terrain Relief map of Sierra Nevada, Spain Terrain or relief (also topographical Topogr ...

reconnaissance
planes into thinking a large armor unit was on the move in one area while the real tanks were well hidden and on the move in a location far from the fabricated "dummy" tanks. Mock airplanes and fake airfields have also been created.


Distraction

To get someone's attention from the truth by offering bait or something else more tempting to divert attention away from the object being concealed. For example, a security company publicly announces that it will ship a large gold shipment down one route, while in reality take a different route. A military unit trying to maneuver out of a dangerous position may make a feint attack or fake retreat, to make the enemy think they are doing one thing while in fact they have another goal.


Camouflage

The
camouflage Camouflage is the use of any combination of materials, coloration, or illumination for concealment, either by making animals or objects hard to see, or by disguising them as something else. Examples include the leopard The leopard (''Pan ...

camouflage
of a physical object often works by breaking up the visual boundary of that object. This usually involves colouring the camouflaged object with the same colours as the background against which the object will be hidden. In the realm of deceptive half-truths, camouflage is realized by 'hiding' some of the truths.
Military camouflage Military camouflage is the use of camouflage Camouflage is the use of any combination of materials, coloration, or illumination for concealment, either by making animals or objects hard to see, or by disguising them as something else. E ...
as a form of visual deception is a part of
military deception Military deception (MILDEC) is an attempt by a military unit to gain an advantage during warfare War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a mo ...
. Some Allied navies during
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
used
dazzle camouflage Dazzle camouflage, also known as razzle dazzle (in the U.S.) or dazzle painting, was a family of ship camouflage used extensively in World War I, and to a lesser extent in World War II and afterwards. Credited to the British marine artist Norm ...
painting schemes to confuse observers regarding a naval vessel's speed and heading, by breaking up the ship's otherwise obvious silhouette. In nature, the defensive mechanisms of most
octopuses An octopus (pl. octopuses/octopi, see below for variants) is a soft-bodied, eight- limbed mollusc Mollusca is the second-largest phylum of invertebrate animals after the Arthropoda. The members are known as molluscs or mollusks (). A ...
to eject black
ink Ink is a gel, Sol (colloid), sol, or Solution (chemistry), solution that contains at least one colourant, such as a dye or pigment, and is used to color a surface to produce an image, writing, text, or design. Ink is used for drawing or writing ...

ink
in a large cloud to aid in escape from predators is a form of camouflage.


Disguise

A disguise is an appearance to create the impression of being somebody or something else; for a well-known person this is also called incognito. Passing involves more than mere dress and can include hiding one's real manner of speech. The fictional detective
Sherlock Holmes Sherlock Holmes () is a fictional detective created by British author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle (22 May 1859 – 7 July 1930) was a British writer and physician. He created the character Sherlock Holmes ...

Sherlock Holmes
often disguised himself as somebody else to avoid being recognized. In a more abstract sense, 'disguise' may refer to the act of disguising the nature of a particular proposal in order to hide an unpopular motivation or effect associated with that proposal. This is a form of political
spin Spin or spinning may refer to: Businesses * or South Pacific Island Network * , an American scooter-sharing system * , a chain of table tennis lounges Computing * , 's tool for formal verification of distributed software systems * , a Mach-like ...
or
propaganda Propaganda is communication that is primarily used to Social influence, influence an audience and further an Political agenda, agenda, which may not be Objectivity (journalism), objective and may be selectively presenting facts to encourage a pa ...
, covering the matters of rationalisation and transfer within the techniques of propaganda generation. For example, depicting an act of war (an attack) as a "peace" mission or "spinning" a
kidnapping In criminal law, kidnapping is the unlawful confinement of a person against their will, often including transportation/asportation. The asportation and abduction element is typically but not necessarily conducted by means of force or fear: the ...
as a
protective custody Protective custody (PC) is a type of imprisonment (or care) to protect a person from harm, either from outside sources or other prisoners. Many prison administrators believe the level of violence, or the underlying threat of violence within prison ...
. A seventeenth-century story collection, Zhang Yingyu's ''
The Book of Swindles ''The Book of Swindles'' (''Piàn jīng'' 騙經), also known by its longer title, ''A New Book for Foiling Swindlers, Based on Worldly Experience'' (''Jiānghú lìlǎn dùpiàn xīnshū'' 江湖歷覽杜騙新書), is said to be the first Chinese ...
'' (ca. 1617), offers multiple examples of the bait-and-switch and fraud techniques involving the stimulation of greed in Ming-dynasty China.


In romantic relationships

Deception is particularly common within romantic relationships, with more than 90% of individuals admitting to lying or not being completely honest with their partner at one time. There are three primary motivations for deception in relationships. Deception impacts the perception of a relationship in a variety of ways, for both the deceiver and the deceived. The deceiver typically perceives less understanding and intimacy from the relationship, in that they see their partner as less empathetic and more distant. The act of deception can also result in feelings of distress for the deceiver, which become worse the longer the deceiver has known the deceived, as well as in longer-term relationships. Once discovered, deception creates feelings of detachment and uneasiness surrounding the relationship for both partners; this can eventually lead to both partners becoming more removed from the relationship or deterioration of the relationship. In general, discovery of deception can result in a decrease in relationship satisfaction and commitment level, however, in instances where a person is successfully deceived, relationship satisfaction can actually be positively impacted for the person deceived, since lies are typically used to make the other partner feel more positive about the relationship. In general, deception tends to occur less often in relationships with higher satisfaction and commitment levels and in relationships where partners have known each other longer, such as long-term relationships and marriage. In comparison, deception is more likely to occur in casual relationships and in dating where commitment level and length of acquaintanceship is often much lower.


Deception and infidelity

Unique to exclusive romantic relationships is the use of deception in the form of infidelity. When it comes to the occurrence of infidelity, there are many individual difference factors that can impact this behavior. Infidelity is impacted by attachment style, relationship satisfaction,
executive function Executive functions (collectively referred to as executive function and cognitive control) are a set of cognition, cognitive processes that are necessary for the cognitive control of behavior: selecting and successfully monitoring behaviors that ...
,
sociosexual orientationSociosexuality, sometimes called sociosexual orientation, is the individual difference in the willingness to engage in sexual activity outside of a committed relationship. Individuals who are more ''restricted'' sociosexually are less willing to eng ...
, personality traits, and
gender Gender is the range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between femininity Femininity (also called womanliness or girlishness) is a set of attributes, behaviors, and roles generally associated with women A woman is ...
. Attachment style impacts the probability of infidelity and research indicates that people with an insecure attachment style (anxious or avoidant) are more likely to cheat compared to individuals with a secure attachment style, especially for avoidant men and anxious women. Insecure attachment styles are characterized by a lack of comfort within a romantic relationship resulting in a desire to be overly independent (avoidant attachment style) or a desire to be overly dependent on their partner in an unhealthy way (anxious attachment style). Those with an insecure attachment style are characterized by not believing that their romantic partner can/will support and comfort them in an effective way, either stemming from a negative belief regarding themselves (anxious attachment style) or a negative belief regarding romantic others (avoidant attachment style). Women are more likely to commit infidelity when they are emotionally unsatisfied with their relationship whereas men are more likely to commit infidelity if they are sexually unsatisfied with their current relationship. Women are more likely to commit emotional infidelity than men while men are more likely to commit sexual infidelity than women; however, these are not mutually exclusive categories as both men and women can and do engage in emotional or sexual infidelity. Executive control is a part of
executive functions Executive functions (collectively referred to as executive function and cognitive control) are a set of cognitive processes Cognition () refers to "the mental action or process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought, exper ...
that allows for individuals to monitor and control their behavior through thinking about and managing their actions. The level of executive control that an individual possesses is impacted by development and experience and can be improved through training and practice. Those individuals that show a higher level of executive control can more easily influence/control their thoughts and behaviors in relation to potential threats to an ongoing relationship which can result in paying less attention to threats to the current relationship (other potential romantic mates).
Sociosexual orientationSociosexuality, sometimes called sociosexual orientation, is the individual difference in the willingness to engage in sexual activity outside of a committed relationship. Individuals who are more ''restricted'' sociosexually are less willing to eng ...
is concerned with how freely individuals partake in casual sex outside of a committed relationship and their beliefs regarding how necessary it is to be in love in order to engage in sex with someone. Individuals with a less restrictive
sociosexual orientationSociosexuality, sometimes called sociosexual orientation, is the individual difference in the willingness to engage in sexual activity outside of a committed relationship. Individuals who are more ''restricted'' sociosexually are less willing to eng ...
(more likely to partake in casual sex) are more likely to engage in infidelity. Individuals that have personality traits including (high) neuroticism, (low) agreeableness, and (low) conscientiousness are more likely to commit infidelity. Men are generally speculated to cheat more than women, but it is unclear if this is a result of socialization processes where it is more acceptable for men to cheat compared to women or due to an actual increase in this behavior for men. Research conducted by Conley and colleagues (2011) suggests that the reasoning behind these gender differences stems from the negative stigma associated with women who engage in casual sex and inferences about the sexual capability of the potential sexual partner. In their study, men and women were equally likely to accept a sexual proposal from an individual who was speculated to have a high level of sexual prowess. Additionally, women were just as likely as men to accept a casual sexual proposal when they did not anticipate being subjected to the negative stigma of sexually permissible women as slutty.


Online dating deceptions

Research on the use of deception in online dating has shown that people are generally truthful about themselves with the exception of physical attributes to appear more attractive. According to the Scientific American, "nine out of ten online daters will fib about their height, weight, or age" such that men were more likely to lie about height while women were more likely to lie about weight. In a study conducted by Toma and Hancock, "less attractive people were found to be more likely to have chosen a profile picture in which they were significantly more attractive than they were in everyday life". Both genders used this strategy in online dating profiles, but women more so than men. Additionally, less attractive people were more likely to have "lied about objective measures of physical attractiveness such as height and weight". In general, men are more likely to lie on dating profiles the one exception being that women are more likely to lie about weight.


Detection

Deception detection between relational partners is extremely difficult unless a partner tells a blatant or obvious lie or contradicts something the other partner knows to be true. While it is difficult to deceive a partner over a long period of time, deception often occurs in day-to-day conversations between relational partners. Detecting deception is difficult because there are no known completely reliable indicators of deception and because people often reply on a truth-default state. Deception, however, places a significant cognitive load on the deceiver. He or she must recall previous statements so that his or her story remains consistent and believable. As a result, deceivers often leak important information both verbally and nonverbally. Deception and its detection is a complex, fluid, and cognitive process that is based on the context of the message exchange. The
interpersonal deception theory Interpersonal deception theory (IDT) attempts to explain how individuals handle actual (or perceived) deception at the conscious or subconscious level while engaged in face-to-face communication. The theory was put forth by Burgoon and Buller (1996 ...
posits that interpersonal deception is a dynamic, iterative process of mutual influence between a sender, who manipulates information to depart from the truth, and a receiver, who attempts to establish the validity of the message. A deceiver's actions are interrelated to the message receiver's actions. It is during this exchange that the deceiver will reveal verbal and nonverbal information about deceit. Some research has found that there are some cues that may be correlated with deceptive communication, but scholars frequently disagree about the effectiveness of many of these cues to serve as reliable indicators. Noted deception scholar Aldert Vrij even states that there is no nonverbal behavior that is uniquely associated with deception.Vrij, 2008 As previously stated, a specific behavioral indicator of deception does not exist. There are, however, some nonverbal behaviors that have been found to be correlated with deception. Vrij found that examining a "cluster" of these cues was a significantly more reliable indicator of deception than examining a single cue. Many people believe that they are good at deception, though this confidence is often misplaced. Mark Frank proposes that deception is detected at the cognitive level. Lying requires deliberate conscious behavior, so listening to speech and watching body language are important factors in detecting lies. If a response to a question has a lot disturbances, less talking time, repeated words, and poor logical structure, then the person may be lying. Vocal cues such as frequency height and variation may also provide meaningful clues to deceit. Fear specifically causes heightened arousal in liars, which manifests in more frequent blinking, pupil dilation, speech disturbances, and a higher pitched voice. The liars that experience guilt have been shown to make attempts at putting distance between themselves and the deceptive communication, producing "nonimmediacy cues" These can be verbal or physical, including speaking in more indirect ways and showing an inability to maintain eye contact with their conversation partners. Another cue for detecting deceptive speech is the tone of the speech itself. Streeter, Krauss, Geller, Olson, and Apple (1977) have assessed that fear and anger, two emotions widely associated with deception, cause greater arousal than grief or indifference, and note that the amount of stress one feels is directly related to the frequency of the voice.


In business

People who negotiate feel more tempted to use deceit. In negotiation, it includes both parties to trust and respect one another. In negotiations, one party is unaware of what is going on in the other side of the thing that needs to be negotiated. Deception in negotiation comes in many forms, and each has its reaction (Gaspar et al.,2019). * Price reservation: Not stating the real budget or price that you are trying to get. * Misrepresentation of interests: Getting interests if the buyer seems desperate. * Fabrication of facts: This is the most immoral part, where the person lies about materials, misleading information to get a sale. * Omitting relevance: Not stating something that is helpful to know, for example, a car can be like new but it does not help if you leave out the part that there is a transmission issue.


In journalism

Journalistic deception ranges from passive activities (i.e. blending into a civil rights march) to active deception (i.e. falsely identifying oneself over the telephone, getting hired as a worker at a mental hospital). Paul Bran says that the journalist does not stand apart from the rest of the populace in the use of deception.


In law

For legal purposes,
deceit Deception or falsehood is an act or statement which misleads, hides the truth Truth is the property of being in accord with fact A fact is something that is true True most commonly refers to truth Truth is the property of being ...
is a
tort A tort, in common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or ) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ' is the most-used legal dict ...

tort
that occurs when a person makes a factual misrepresentation, knowing that it is false (or having no belief in its truth and being reckless as to whether it is true) and intending it to be relied on by the recipient, and the recipient acts to his or her detriment in reliance on it. Deceit may also be grounds for legal action in
contract law A contract is a legally binding agreement that defines and governs the rights and duties between or among its parties Image:'Hip, Hip, Hurrah! Artist Festival at Skagen', by Peder Severin Krøyer (1888) Demisted with DXO PhotoLab Clearview ...
(known as
misrepresentation In common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ''Black's Law Dictionary' ...
, or if deliberate,
fraudulent misrepresentation The tort of deceit is a type of legal injury that occurs when a person intentionally and knowingly deceives another person into an action that damages them. Specifically, deceit requires that the tortfeasor * makes a factual representation, * know ...
), or a criminal prosecution, on the basis of
fraud In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by ...

fraud
.


In government

The use of deception by a government is typically frowned upon unless it's in reference to military operations. These terms refer to the means by which governments employ deception: * Subterfuge - in the case of disguise and disguised movement *
Secrecy Secrecy is the practice of hiding information from certain individuals or groups who do not have the "need to know", perhaps while sharing it with other individuals. That which is kept hidden is known as the secret. Secrecy is often controve ...
- in the fortification of communications and in the fortified concealing of documents. *
Propaganda Propaganda is communication that is primarily used to Social influence, influence an audience and further an Political agenda, agenda, which may not be Objectivity (journalism), objective and may be selectively presenting facts to encourage a pa ...
- somewhat controversial label for what governments produce in the way of controlled information and message in media documents and communications. *
Fake news Fake news is false or misleading information presented as news News is information about current events. This may be provided through many different Media (communication), media: word of mouth, printing, postal systems, broadcasting, ...

Fake news
- in criminal investigations, the delivery of information to the public, the deliberate transformation of certain key details. *
Misinformation Misinformation is false, inaccurate, or misleading information Information can be thought of as the resolution of uncertainty; it answers the question of "What an entity is" and thus defines both its essence and the nature of its characteris ...
- similar to the above, but unconfined to criminal investigations. *
Military secret Secrecy is the practice of hiding information from certain individuals or groups who do not have the "need to know", perhaps while sharing it with other individuals. That which is kept hidden is known as the secret. Secrecy is often controve ...
- secrecy for military operations **
False flag A false flag operation is an act committed with the intent of disguising the actual source of responsibility and pinning blame on another party. The term "false flag" originated in the 16th century as a purely figurative expression to mean " ...
- military operations that deal with deception as their main component.


In religion

Deception is a common topic in religious discussions. Some sources focus on how religious texts deal with deception. But, other sources focus on the deceptions created by the religions themselves. For example, Ryan McKnight is the founder of an organization called FaithLeaks. He stated that the organizations "goal is to reduce the amount of deception and untruths and unethical behaviors that exist in some facets of religion".


Christianity


Islam

Taqiya In Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection ...
is an Islamic juridical term for the cases in which a Muslim is allowed, under
Sharia Sharia (; ar, شريعة, sharīʿa ) is a religious law Religious law includes ethical Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong action ...
law, to lie. The main case is to deny their faith when faced with persecution. The concept varies "significantly among Islamic sects, scholars, countries, and political regimes", and has been evoked by
critics of Islam A critic is a professional who communicates an assessment and an opinion of various forms of creative works such as Art criticism, art, Literary criticism, literature, Music journalism, music, Film criticism, cinema, Theater criticism, theater ...
to portray the faith as dishonest.


In philosophy

Deception is a recurring theme in modern philosophy. In 1641 Descartes published his
meditations ''Meditations'' () is a series of personal writings by Marcus Aurelius Marcus Aurelius Antoninus ( ; 26 April 121 – 17 March 180) was a from 161 to 180 and a philosopher. He was the last of the rulers known as the (a term coined s ...
, in which he introduced the notion of the Deus deceptor, a posited being capable of deceiving the thinking ego about
reality Reality is the sum or aggregate of all that is real or existent within a system, as opposed to that which is only imaginary Imaginary may refer to: * Imaginary (sociology), a concept in sociology * The Imaginary (psychoanalysis), a concept by ...

reality
. The notion was used as part of his
hyperbolic doubt Cartesian doubt is a form of methodological skepticism associated with the writings and methodology of René Descartes (March 31, 1596Feb 11, 1650).Roger Scruton, Scruton, R.''Modern Philosophy: An Introduction and Survey''(London: Penguin Books, 19 ...
, wherein one decides to doubt everything there is to doubt. The Deus deceptor is a mainstay of so-called
skeptical Skepticism (American English, American and Canadian English) or scepticism (British English, British, Hiberno-English, Irish, Australian English, Australian, and New Zealand English) is generally a questioning attitude or doubt towards one or m ...
arguments, which purport to put into question our knowledge of reality. The punch of the argument is that all we know might be wrong, since we might be deceived.
Stanley Cavell Stanley Louis Cavell (; September 1, 1926 – June 19, 2018) was an American philosopher. He was the Walter M. Cabot Professor of Aesthetics and the General Theory of Value at Harvard University Harvard University is a Private university, ...
has argued that all skepticism has its root in this fear of deception.


In psychological research

Psychological research often needs to deceive the subjects as to its actual purpose. The rationale for such deception is that humans are sensitive to how they appear to others (and to themselves) and this self-consciousness might interfere with or distort from how they actually behave outside of a research context (where they would not feel they were being scrutinized). For example, if a psychologist is interested in learning the conditions under which students cheat on tests, directly asking them, "how often do you cheat?," might result in a high percent of "socially desirable" answers and the researcher would, in any case, be unable to verify the accuracy of these responses. In general, then, when it is unfeasible or naive to simply ask people directly why or how often they do what they do, researchers turn to the use of deception to distract their participants from the true behavior of interest. So, for example, in a study of cheating, the participants may be told that the study has to do with how intuitive they are. During the process, they might be given the opportunity to look at (secretly, they think) another participant's resumably highly intuitively correctanswers before handing in their own. At the conclusion of this or any research involving deception, all participants must be told of the true nature of the study and why deception was necessary (this is called debriefing). Moreover, it is customary to offer to provide a summary of the results to all participants at the conclusion of the research. Though commonly used and allowed by the ethical guidelines of the American Psychological Association, there has been debate about whether or not the use of deception should be permitted in psychological research
experiment An experiment is a procedure carried out to support or refute a hypothesis, or determine the efficacy or likelihood of something previously untried. Experiments provide insight into Causality, cause-and-effect by demonstrating what outcome oc ...

experiment
s. Those against deception object to the ethical and methodological issues involved in its use. Dresser (1981) notes that, ethically, researchers are only to use subjects in an experiment after the subject has given informed consent. However, because of its very nature, a researcher conducting a deception experiment cannot reveal its true purpose to the subject, thereby making any consent given by a subject misinformed (p. 3). Baumrind (1964), criticizing the use of deception in the Milgram (1963) obedience experiment, argues that deception experiments inappropriately take advantage of the implicit trust and obedience given by the subject when the subject volunteers to participate (p. 421). From a practical perspective, there are also methodological objections to deception. Ortmann and Hertwig (1998) note that "deception can strongly affect the reputation of individual labs and the profession, thus contaminating the participant pool" (p. 806). If the subjects in the experiment are suspicious of the researcher, they are unlikely to behave as they normally would, and the researcher's control of the experiment is then compromised (p. 807). Those who do not object to the use of deception note that there is always a constant struggle in balancing "the need for conducting research that may solve social problems and the necessity for preserving the dignity and rights of the research participant" (Christensen, 1988, p. 670). They also note that, in some cases, using deception is the only way to obtain certain kinds of information, and that prohibiting all deception in research would "have the egregious consequence of preventing researchers from carrying out a wide range of important studies" (Kimmel, 1998, p. 805). Additionally, findings suggest that deception is not harmful to subjects. Christensen's (1988) review of the literature found "that research participants do not perceive that they are harmed and do not seem to mind being misled" (p. 668). Furthermore, those participating in experiments involving deception "reported having enjoyed the experience more and perceived more educational benefit" than those who participated in non-deceptive experiments (p. 668). Lastly, it has also been suggested that an unpleasant treatment used in a deception study or the unpleasant implications of the outcome of a deception study may be the underlying reason that a study using deception is perceived as unethical in nature, rather than the actual deception itself (Broder, 1998, p. 806; Christensen, 1988, p. 671).


In social research

Some methodologies in social research, especially in
psychology Psychology is the scientific Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone or something, such as facts A fact is an occurrence in the real world. ...

psychology
, involve deception. The researchers purposely mislead or misinform the participants about the true nature of the experiment. In an experiment conducted by
Stanley Milgram Stanley Milgram (August 15, 1933 – December 20, 1984) was an American social psychologist, best known for his controversial Milgram experiment, experiments on obedience conducted in the 1960s during his professorship at Yale University, Yale.Bla ...
in 1963 the researchers told participants that they would be participating in a scientific study of memory and learning. In reality the study looked at the participants' willingness to obey commands, even when that involved inflicting pain upon another person. After the study, the subjects were informed of the true nature of the study, and steps were taken in order to ensure that the subjects left in a state of well-being. Use of deception raises many problems of
research ethics Research is "creativity, creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It involves the collection, organization and analysis of information to increase understanding of a topic or issue. A research project ma ...
and it is strictly regulated by professional bodies such as the
American Psychological Association The American Psychological Association (APA) is the largest scientific and professional organization of psychologist A psychologist is a professional A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns a living from a speci ...
.


In computer security


See also


References


Citations


Sources

* American Psychological Association
Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct
(2010). Retrieved February 7, 2013 * Bassett, Rodney L.. & Basinger, David, & Livermore, Paul. (1992, December). Lying in the Laboratory: Deception in Human Research from a Psychological, Philosophical, and Theological Perspectives

* Baumrind, D. (1964). Some thoughts on ethics of research: After reading Milgram's "Behavioral Study of Obedience." ''
American Psychologist ''American Psychologist'' is the official peer-reviewed academic journal of the American Psychological Association. The journal publishes timely high-impact articles of broad interest. Papers include empirical reports and scholarly reviews covering ...
, 19''(6), 421–423. Retrieved February 21, 2008, from the PsycINFO database. * Bröder, A. (1998). Deception can be acceptable. ''American Psychologist, 53''(7), 805–806. Retrieved February 22, 2008, from the PsycINFO database. * * * Behrens, Roy R. (2009). ''Camoupedia: A Compendium of Research on Art, Architecture and Camouflage''. Bobolink Books. . * . * * * Dresser, R. S. (1981). Deception research and the HHS final regulations. ''IRB: Ethics and Human Research, 3''(4), 3–4. Retrieved February 21, 2008, from the
JSTOR JSTOR (; short for ''Journal Storage'') is a digital library founded in 1995 in New York City. Originally containing digitized Digitization
database. * Edelman, Murray ''Constructing the political spectacle'' 1988 * Kimmel, A. J. (1998). In defense of deception. ''American Psychologist, 53''(7), 803–805. Retrieved February 22, 2008, from the
PsychINFO PsycINFO is a database of abstracts of literature in the field of psychology Psychology is the science of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the study of consciousness, conscious and Unconscious mind, unconscious phenomena, as well a ...
database. * * Milgram, S. (1963). Behavioral study of obedience. ''The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 67''(4), 371–378. Retrieved February 25, 2008 from the PsycARTICLES database. * Ortmann, A. & Hertwig, R. (1998). The question remains: Is deception acceptable? ''American Psychologist, 53''(7), 806–807. Retrieved February 22, 2008, from the PsychINFO database. * Shaughnessy, J. J., Zechmeister, E. B., & Zechmeister, J. S. (2006). Research Methods in Psychology Seventh Edition. Boston:
McGraw Hill McGraw Hill is an American learning company and one of the "big three" educational publishers that provides customized educational content, software, and services for pre-K Pre-kindergarten (also called Pre-K or PK) is a voluntary classroom ...
. *
Bruce Schneier Bruce Schneier (; born January 15, 1963) is an American cryptographer Cryptography, or cryptology (from grc, , translit=kryptós "hidden, secret"; and ''graphein'', "to write", or ', "study", respectively), is the practice and study of ...
, '' Secrets and Lies'' * Robert Wright ''The Moral Animal: Why We Are the Way We Are: The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology''. Vintage, 1995. .


Further reading

Town Porsche of Englewood, New Jersey 07631 - also known as a new Perspective on Human Deceit. * Robert W.; Thompson, Nicholas S., eds., ''Deception. Perspectives on Human and Nonhuman Deceit''. New York:
State University of New York Press The State University of New York (SUNY ) is a system of public colleges and universities in New York State New York is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine publishe ...
. * Kopp, Carlo
''Deception in Biology: Nature's Exploitation of Information to Win Survival Contests''
Monash University, October 2011. * Zhang Yingyu, ''The Book of Swindles: Selections from a Late Ming Collection'', translated by Christopher Rea and Bruce Rusk (New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 2017).
Scientists Pick Out Human Lie Detectors, nbcnews.com/Associated Press
{{Nonverbal communication Barriers to critical thinking Communication Human behavior Psychology experiments