Incident 701: American Asylum Seeker John Mark Dougan in Russia Reportedly Spreads Disinformation via AI Tools and Fake News Network

Description: John Mark Dougan, a former Florida sheriff's deputy granted asylum in Russia, has been implicated in spreading disinformation. Utilizing AI tools like OpenAI's ChatGPT and DALL-E 3, Dougan created over 160 fake news sites, disseminating false narratives to millions worldwide. His actions align with Russian disinformation strategies targeting Western democracies. See also Incident 734.


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Alleged: OpenAI developed an AI system deployed by John Mark Dougan, which harmed Journalism , Information integrity , General public and American citizens.

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Daniel Atherton
Once a Sheriff’s Deputy in Florida, Now a Source of Disinformation From Russia · 2024

A dozen years ago, John Mark Dougan, a former deputy sheriff in Palm Beach County, Fla., sent voters an email posing as a county commissioner, urging them to oppose the re-election of the county's sheriff.

He later masqueraded online as a R…


A "variant" is an incident that shares the same causative factors, produces similar harms, and involves the same intelligent systems as a known AI incident. Rather than index variants as entirely separate incidents, we list variations of incidents under the first similar incident submitted to the database. Unlike other submission types to the incident database, variants are not required to have reporting in evidence external to the Incident Database. Learn more from the research paper.