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Deception, a complex and multifaceted concept, encompasses a variety of forms such as lies, concealments, equivocations, exaggerations, and understatements. The motivations behind deception can be instrumental, relational, or based on one’s identity. Techniques of deception are vast, including mimicry, fabrication, distraction, camouflage, and disguise. It’s not uncommon to find deception in relationships, driven by partner-focused, self-focused, or relationship-focused motives. The impact of deception on relationships can be significant, often resulting in distress, detachment, and diminished satisfaction. The task of detecting deception is intricate, given the lack of specific behavioral signs and the need to assess both verbal and nonverbal cues. The interpersonal deception theory offers insight into the dynamic nature of deception.

Deception (Wikipedia)

Deception is an act or statement that misleads, hides the truth, or promotes a belief, concept, or idea that is not true. This occurs when a deceiver uses information against a person to make them believe an idea is true. Deception can be used with both verbal and nonverbal messages. The person creating the deception knows it to be false while the receiver of the message has a tendency to believe it (although it’s not always the case). 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, as in bad faith. It can also be called, with varying subjective implications, beguilement, deceit, bluff, mystification, ruse, or subterfuge.

Deception is a major relational transgression that often leads to feelings of betrayal and distrust between relational partners. Deception violates relational rules and is considered to be a negative violation 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 and relational partners.

Deceit and dishonesty can also form grounds for civil litigation in tort, or contract law (where it is known as misrepresentation or fraudulent misrepresentation if deliberate), or give rise to criminal prosecution for fraud. It also forms a vital part of psychological warfare in denial and deception.

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