FACT CHECK: No, These Are Not Real Photos Of A UFO

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

Images shared on Facebook over 1,200 times purportedly show a UFO flying near an Air Force base in Utah.

Verdict: False

The images actually come from a video made with computer-generated imagery (CGI).

Fact Check:

There have been at least 29 alleged UFO sightings in Utah reported in 2021 as of press time, according to data collected by the non-profit National UFO Reporting Center. Now, a Nov. 16 Facebook post claims to show an unidentified object in the air with a helicopter flying nearby.

“Helicopter next to a UFO photographed near Hill Air Force Base, Utah, United States,” the post’s caption reads. Hill Air Force Base is the second-largest Air Force base, according to its website. (RELATED: Did 27 Air Force Pilots Resign Over Mandated Covid-19 Vaccines?)

The Facebook post does not, however, show a genuine UFO sighting in Utah, or anywhere else. Through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact found that images in the Facebook post are stills from a video posted on YouTube in January 2018 titled “UFO over RIO DE JANEIRO (CGI).” The video was posted by UFO SECTION 51, a group of French visual effects artists, according to the channel’s “About” page. UFO Section 51 has produced many similar videos with CGI that garnered millions of views.

A July Gallup poll showed that about 44 percent of U.S. respondents said they believed some UFOs were alien spacecraft, an eight percent increase from the results of a similar poll the company conducted in August 2019.

This is not the first time social media users have shared false claims about UFOs being filmed. In March 2020, Check Your Fact debunked the baseless claim that the International Space Station captured footage of a UFO on its livestream.

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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