How to combat false information about risk
The combat against false information belongs to the most challenging priorities of the Untied Nations Organisation. Social Media made it even easier to spread false information more quickly then ever before. False information can also hamper efforts during natural disasters and an appropriate preparation of communities to fight them. That’s why the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) offers you five ways to manage false information about the topic risk. These can also be found as a part of this year’s Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction.
Misinformation can lead people to underestimate or ignore some risks while overestimating others. Risk communicators must proactively manage false and misleading information that can put people at risk.
Risk communication strategies must plan for and proactively manage false and misleading information that can heighten disaster risk and damage trust. Risk communicators can address potentially false and misleading information by listening to people’s concerns, anticipating potential opportunities for misinformation and disinformation, acknowledging uncertainty and differing beliefs, and responding judiciously. Therefore, it is important to keep the following aspects in mind:
1. Know what fuels rumors among certain groups
2. Anticipate what could go wrong
3. Listen out for unverified, false or misleading information
4. Respond to false information
5. Be prepared for grey areas