The novel coronavirus outbreak, which has spread to several countries with health workers looking for ways to stem the spread of the virus, has resulted in an "infodemic," according to The World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO, defines an infodemic as "an overabundance of information- some accurate and some not, that makes it hard for people to find trustworthy source and reliable guidance when they need it."
Following the spread of COVID-19, false claims online have spiked with misinformation on how the disease began or promises of magical cures. The WHO has cautioned that misinformation online has spread more than the virus, and is working with tech companies such as Google and Tencent to combat the rumor and myth to ensure correct information is available.
Top weekly tech articles curated for you:
- Social media networks Facebook and Twitter are hesitant to affirm claims by the US State Department that Russian-linked social media accounts are responsible for the spread of myth and lies about coronavirus on social media.
- Despite Reddit's reputation for being a sometimes-toxic rumor mill, the site has become the unlikely home of users fighting the spread of fake news. The Reddit forums with names such as r/DisinformationWatch, r/ActiveMeasures, r/trollfare, r/Against_Astroturfing, "mostly pseudonym users share links to news stories and academic research papers about online disinformation campaigns.”
- The Trade Desk Video advertisement campaign is providing a compelling alternative to understand the current digital landscape available on the open internet for digital advertising. Including why transparency, with broader reach in digital advertising campaigns, is critical to the advertiser's success.
- Singapore is creating a smart city, through its Sustainable Singapore Blueprint (SSB) to make it inhabitable for its large and growing population (approx 6M). Part of its critical framework is to recognize that emerging technologies pose new challenges, such as when an autonomous bus breaks down, and incorporate a plan that ensures safety with a framework for the regulation.
- The United States (U.S) and European Union (EU), share overlapping principles in their approach to Artificial Intelligence (AI) transforming how economies grow, generate jobs, and conduct international trade, such as the need to develop an "ecosystem of trust" in AI. The recently published white paper on AI and data strategy provides a platform for collaboration.
- When addressing cybersecurity fraud, "AI and other technologies may boost an enterprise's defenses, but they often remedy symptoms and not cure the disease." learn more on advanced cybersecurity fraud and how to fight it.
- Wired had a piece on how to find out what’s online about yourself - and thereby to make it harder for abusers to track down private information for 'doxing'. This increasing technique – often used against politically marginalized voices – brings online harassment to the real world.
- The current law criminalizing cybersecurity crimes in Mali undermines the data privacy rights and pose a potential threat to freedom of expression online, "especially given Mali's democracy deficits and low press freedom ranking."
- Critical vulnerabilities were found in 'PayPal' –what it means and how the company's inefficient approach to criticism has affected its reputation.
- Grindr has introduced a discreet app icon feature, which provides users the option of replacing the Grindr app image on their phone, with another symbol, to protect them in countries where they are susceptible to attack. The feature is developed, in collaboration with The Guardian Project, and Grindr for Equality.
- While there is increased recognition on the potential of mobile technology to deliver crucial services for people living with a form of disability, there has been limited research in understanding the Mobile Disability Gap; In this report, ICT_Works explores 10 insights on Mobile Usage by Persons with Disabilities.
Democracy Food for Thought
- Getting modernization right and integrating it into institutions and systems, will need government leaders to attain a certain comfort level with emerging technology, to prevent future dysfunctions in processes, such as the Iowa Democratic Party caucus voting. Improvement, would mean leaders are more likely to award contracts based on competence rather on existing relationships.
- Many experts, including technologists, researchers, and business leaders, have warned that technology will fundamentally weaken democracy by 2030. According to Pew Research Center, 49% of a group of 979 technology experts believe the internet is being weaponized to destabilize democratic institutions by encouraging mistrust and engendering chaos.