Countering disinformation

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Thank you Madam President, Honourable Members,

It is really evident that the virus pandemic has been accompanied by an ‘infodemic’, by a pandemic of disinformation. We have witnessed a wave of false and misleading information, and an exponential increase in targeted influence operations by foreign actors.

The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by a massive wave of false and misleading information, attempts by foreign actors to influence domestic debates in the EU, breeding on the fertile ground of people’s most basic anxieties and the rapidly changing news cycle. Misleading healthcare information, dangerous hoaxes with false claims conspiracy theories and consumer fraud endanger public health.

The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by a massive wave of false and misleading information, attempts by foreign actors to influence domestic debates in the EU, breeding on the fertile ground of people’s most basic anxieties and the rapidly changing news cycle. Misleading healthcare information, dangerous hoaxes with false claims conspiracy theories and consumer fraud endanger public health.

Building on our strategic partnership, shared values and commitment to multilateralism, Canada and the European Union (EU) are working intensively together to address the significant consular, public health and economic challenges of the COVID-19 crisis.

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"We are facing an info-demic with dangerous impact on public health. We’ll continue to tackle disinformation, and coordinate and intensify our efforts with the Member States and with social media platforms" - Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

Disinformation and misinformation around COVID-19 continue to proliferate around the world, with potentially harmful consequences for public health and effective crisis communication. In the EU and elsewhere, coordinated disinformation messaging seeks to frame vulnerable minorities as the cause of the pandemic and to fuel distrust in the ability of democratic institutions to deliver effective responses. Some state and state-backed actors seek to exploit the public health crisis to advance geopolitical interests, often by directly challenging the credibility of the European Union and its partners.

Hundreds of analyses, thousands of cases, people from more than 14 countries involved in the daily work, over 20 states and languages covered – a look back at the EUvsDisinfo work on countering disinformation

The European Council on 20 June 2019 adopted conclusions on the next institutional cycle, the MFF, climate change, disinformation and hybrid threats, external relations, the European Semester and enlargement.

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Joint Communication to the European Parliament, the European Council, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Report on the implementation of the Action Plan Against Disinformation

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