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IT Minister Asks Social Media Firms To Remove False News From Their Platform

Taking cognisance of fake news reports on the internet, the IT ministry has asked all social media companies to immediately remove false news spreading misinformation about coronavirus from their platform.

The Ministry of Electronics and IT issued an advisory on March 20 asking social media companies to inform their users about not posting false news that can create panic among the public and disturb social tranquillity.

“Intermediaries are urged to… take immediate action to disable or remove such (false news) content hosted on their platforms on a priority basis,” Meity cyber laws and e-security Group coordinator Rakesh Maheshwari said in the advisory note issued to all social media companies.

The advisory said that the coronavirus outbreak has become a global concern with Wolrd Health Organisation declaring it a global health emergency.

It said that as per media reports there is a trend of circulation of misinformation/false news and sharing anonymous data related to coronavirus in social media platforms creating panic among the public.

The advisory asked social media companies to initiate “awareness campaign on their platforms for the users not to upload or circulate any false news or misinformation concerning coronavirus which are likely to create panic among the public and disturb the public order and social tranquillity”

The ministry has asked social media companies to promote the dissemination of authentic information related to coronavirus to the extent possible.

The total number of coronavirus positive cases India reached 341 on Sunday afternoon, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare data.

Globally, the number of deaths due to coronavirus crossed 13,000 on Sunday.

—Outlook India

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