Coronavirus: the latest hoax on WhatsApp
Coronavirus: the latest hoax on WhatsApp

The coronavirus COVID-19 is causing an avalanche of information that the whatsapp hoaxesThey take advantage of, spread advice of dubious origin, so "fact checking" becomes key, that is, verifying if the information is reliable.

A message that many are receiving via WhatsApp reflects the recommendations of Dr. Lidia Rota Vender, an Italian doctor who is president of the Association Against Thrombosis and Cardiovascular Diseases.

Both the doctor and the association are real, and perhaps that makes the hoax more worrying, since it mixes official communications with other information of unknown origin, creating confusion regarding the coronavirus epidemic.

Coronavirus: the latest hoax on WhatsApp
Coronavirus: the latest hoax on WhatsApp

First of all, we must clarify that the most reliable advice comes from the World He alth Organization (WHO) and from the he alth authorities of each country. Despite this, it is true that the association of the Italian hematologist Lidia Rota published a note en titled "The coronavirus is not stopped by panic, but by intelligence."

However, some problems arise: First of all, the article is dated February 23, and the coronavirus situation has changed, but also the original text has been altered in a significant way.

In fact, the statement from the Association against Thrombosis and Cardiovascular Diseases is circulating mixed with the hoax about the diagnosis of the coronavirus on WhatsApp and other fragments of unknown origin.

The WhatsApp viral begins with the following fragment:

"From Milan, a close collaborator of an NGO dedicated to disseminating advice on he alth, conveys to us the sayings of Dr. Lidia Rota Vender…"

A few lines below there is talk of a "young researcher who was transferred from Shenzhen Canton, China to Wuhan", increasing the confusion, although we do not rule out that circulating various versions of the text, which seems to originate from Italy.

We found two common factors in hoaxes and fake news, on the one hand the origin of the information is not very specific, and also Does not include links to reliable sources that give it credibility.

We have already explained how to detect hoaxes on WhatsApp, and with the expansion of COVID-19 it is essential to be critical of the information received.

Especially because the message proposes ideas such as drinking hot liquids or sunbathing, which do not coincide with the current guidance for citizens of the WHO, and may raise questions.

In general, it is not a good idea to find out about a disease through WhatsApp, since we do not know the origin of the data, and They are probably not up to date. The most responsible thing to do is to visit the World He alth Organization website (we include the link at the end of the article), where new developments are published.

Regarding the message, it is better to delete it without forwarding it, since there is enough information about COVID-19 available, and we must prevent coronavirus hoaxes from spreading on WhatsAppto responsibly manage the he alth crisis.

Have you received the hoax attributed to the hematologist Lidia Rota Vender? Are you worried that this type of viral spreads?

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