Fake News on WhatsApp and WeChat

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There have been at least five fake news items circulating on phone messaging apps in the past week.

“Malaysians must be alert. These fake news items are meant to mislead the public. There are at least five fake news messages circulating in WhatsApp and WeChat over the past one week,” said MCA Youth chief Datuk Chong Sin Woon.

Speaking at a press conference on Saturday, he said these fake messages include a message written in Chinese that warned Chinese voters not to go to nightclubs a day before the polling day. The message claimed that police will be arresting the Chinese and will remand them for a few days to stop them from voting.

There is also another one on a purported correct method of marking the ballot paper, which could lead to people casting spoiled votes.

“The message asked voters to mark a cross from a corner to the other end. This is not true. A simple cross is acceptable. If the cross is marked outside of the box, the vote could be void,” he said.

“There are also calls for people to check on polling centres because Barisan Nasional will try to gauge its number of voters and add more ballot papers into the box if they are insufficient.

“These are all lies and it is clear that those who concocted this false information is trying to disrupt the electoral process,” Chong added.

He said with the recent Anti-Fake News Law gazetted, MCA will discuss with its law bureau on whether to report the matter to the police.

“We hope to raise public awareness and advise the public to be careful and do not be fooled by these fake messages. Be careful in sharing such news,” he added.