Hanoi police and the municipal Department of Information and Communication have imposed a series of fines on those posting Covid-19 fake news or rumors on social media.
The municipal police said many people have made use of the complicated evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic to spread fake news on social media to earn likes, views and shares. This has showed confusion among people and made it more difficult for pandemic prevention.
The news mainly contained false and fabricated information about Covid-19 patients and those who made contact with the infected cases.
A girl spreading untruthful information on social media works with the municipal Department of Information and Communications. Photo: Kinhtedothi.vn
The municipal Department of Information and Communications has asked the violators to remove the fake news posts, pledge not to repeat the offense and fined VND7.5 million (US$325) for individuals.
The Facebook account holders later admitted the act of posting fake news on social media with a view to increasing traffic for their fan pages.
Since the latest Covid-19 broke out in Vietnam, police in Hanoi have handled a number of fake news dissemination. However, none of those who spread fake news has faced criminal charges so far but were handed fines of VND10-15 million (US$427- 641) under Decree 174/2013 on administrative violations of post and telecommunications, information technology and radio frequency regulations.
Previously, Hanoi police launched a crackdown on spreading false rumors under the guidance issued by the Supreme Court on the application of the Penal Code on the prosecution of offenses committed in the pandemic periods in 2020.
Police and Hanoi authorities have called on citizens to be more discerning about the information they receive, and follow official sources to update themselves on the disease situation in Vietnam. Especially, people should not share unverified information which could negatively affect the fight against the pandemic.