Fact Check: Laura Ingraham Did NOT Report Dr. Oz Was Sued Over 'Revolutionary Diabetes Curing Drug' -- Audio Is Doctored

Fact Check

  • by: Ed Payne
Fact Check: Laura Ingraham Did NOT Report Dr. Oz Was Sued Over 'Revolutionary Diabetes Curing Drug' -- Audio Is Doctored Fake Audio

Did Fox News Channel host Laura Ingraham report that Dr. Mehmet Oz was sued by "Big Pharma" over a "revolutionary diabetes curing drug"? No, that's not true: A Fox News spokesperson told Lead Stories that Ingraham didn't say that on her show. Additionally, a digital forensics and deepfakes expert told Lead Stories that a recording purporting to show her saying that was not authentic.

The claim appeared in a post and video (archived here) published by the Medicine for you Facebook page on December 13, 2023, under the title "WHY IS DR. OZ BEING SUED BY BIG PHARMA FOR SHARING THIS REVOLUTIONARY DIABETES CURING DIET?" The post's caption said:

🚨 Exclusive Breaking News! 🚨

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:


(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Mon Dec 18 22:05:05 2023 UTC)

Google searches

A Google News search (archived here) on December 19, 2023, using the terms "Fox News Channel host Laura Ingraham reported that Dr. Mehmet Oz was sued by 'Big Pharma' over a "revolutionary diabetes curing drug," found no results matching the claim in the post and video.

A regular Google search (archived here) also found no results indicating that Ingraham reported any such news, However, it did produce a report by the French news agency AFP warning about deepfake videos using news anchors to promote diabetes cures.

Fox News Channel

Lead Stories also reached out to the Fox News Channel, where Ingraham works, for a response to the claim. In a December 19, 2023, email, network spokesperson Connor Smith said:

Laura Ingraham did not say this on her show.


To verify the authenticity of the audio linked to the video clip, Lead Stories ran the sound from the Facebook post through an online tool called the DeepFake-o-meter (archived here), hosted by The University of Buffalo's Media Forensic Lab, which focuses on the forensic analysis of digital media. The website says it uses "deepfake detection methods" to analyze sound, images and video and then weighs in on the media's likelihood of being fake.

Lead Stories stripped the audio from the Laura Ingraham video file as an MP3 and then uploaded it to the deepfake tool. The DeepFake-o-meter's analysis concluded (archived here) that "This sample is unlikely real," giving it only a 5.2 percent "Real Probability" and a 94.8 percent "Fake Probability."

A screenshot of the website appears below, followed by a screenshot of the emailed detection report sent to Lead Stories on December 19, 2023:


(Source: DeepFake-o-meter website screenshot taken on Tue Dec 19 18:56:55 2023 UTC)

DeepFake-o-meter Detection Report:

deepfake crop.png

(Source: Detection Report screenshot from Lead Stories email taken on Tue Dec 19 2023 UTC)

Digital media forensics and deepfakes expert

In a December 19, 2023, phone interview, Hafiz Malik, founder and director of the Information Systems, Security, and Forensics Laboratory at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, agreed, telling Lead Stories that the "Video is particularly very poor quality" and there's a "big mismatch" between the lip movements and the audio. He continued:

A superbly bad job, whoever did it. ...

The poor quality of that is pretty obvious ... because I analyze these audios day-in day-out kind of basis. So, therefore, I can see clear signs of computer-generated audio part of that one.

Read more

Additional Lead Stories fact checks of claims related to deepfakes can be found here.

Lead Stories previous debunked posts falsely claiming that Dr. Mehmet Oz endorsed a purported "cure" for prostate disease, a gummy product that supposedly cleans blood vessels and a supposed new drug that purportedly cured diabetes.

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  Ed Payne

Ed Payne is a staff writer at Lead Stories. He is an Emmy Award-winning journalist as part of CNN’s coverage of 9/11. Ed worked at CNN for nearly 24 years with the CNN Radio Network and CNN Digital. Most recently, he was a Digital Senior Producer for Gray Television’s Digital Content Center, the company’s digital news hub for 100+ TV stations. Ed also worked as a writer and editor for WebMD. In addition to his journalistic endeavors, Ed is the author of two children’s book series: “The Daily Rounds of a Hound” and “Vail’s Tales.” 

Read more about or contact Ed Payne

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