Indonesia has been busy with "fake news" about its fatal earthquake tsunami disaster. The police arrested nine people for spreading false reports to prevent further panic among the survivors.
False reports claiming another big quake hit Sulawesi Island ̵
Another Facebook post used a photo of the 2004 Tsunami episode of Boxing Day to illustrate what a scene from the coastal city of Palu was.
A headline read: "Those who share this post will be spared disasters."
Setyo Wasisto, Indonesia's national police spokesman, Kompas TV on Thursday, said nine people had been arrested on suspicion of spreading false news , Most content was posted on Facebook, he added.
Indonesia has a long-standing problem with Internet counterfeiting and fake news is never far away after a catastrophe.
The country has one of the largest online audiences in the world with a population of 260 million people and one of the world's highest social media usage rates.
"If anyone foresees another massive earthquake or tsunami, it's fake news," said Daryono, head of the Earthquake and Tsunami Information Center for the geophysical agency, which has a name for how many Indonesians.
"Spreading this kind of information creates more suffering and confusion for people."
Teams from the Indonesian Ministry of Communications and Civil Protection have used Twitter and other social media to expose fake allegations
Communications and Information Ministry spokesman Ferdinandus Setu told AFP that a 70-strong team works 24 hours a day Day of fake reports of a disaster, including a claim that Palu's mayor is among the dead.
I have confirmed that the mayor is still alive and well, "said Setu.
As soon as the team unmasks the content, the ministry announces its findings through regular press releases and also gives the results
The ministry's efforts are accompanied by spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, who has won admirers for updating journalists despite suffering from terminal cancer.
"I apologize if I can not answer every question from journalists, if I were healthy I would certainly do it, no matter what happened," Nugroho told reporters this week while still keeping daily press briefings. Calling journalists and communicating on social media.
Hoaxes were also rampant during a quake on Lombok Island, next to Bali, this summer
Indonesian police have been spreading fake news and online hate speech in the last few months, ahead of next year's presidential elections ,
President Joko Widodo – who has been complaining about false Internet claims that he is a Communist – opened a new cyber security agency in January.
The following month, the Ministry of Communications announced that it would use new software to identify counterfeit news sites.
Members of the Muslim Cyber Army (MCA) – a group of loosely-linked groups charged with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to attack the government and stir up religious extremism – were added together.
About 130 million Indonesians make up half of the population – an average of three and a half hours a day in social media, one of the highest rates in the world, according to the London creative agency We Are Social and social media management platform Hootsuite
Das Country was also late in introducing digital literacy programs, experts say.
Indonesian earthquake and tsunami devastated coast, many victims