Japan to create new agency to counter fake news

The Japanese government has announced the creation of a new unit next year that would counter fake news and online disinformation, according to the National broadcaster NHK. According to the experts, disinformation is sent to the public through social media networks and that can influence public opinion and cause social turmoil. Some analysts say Russia has employed such methods against Ukraine and that China has done so against Taiwan. Disinformation has become a rampant problem in the digital age, experts said. Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno Hirokazu said spreading fake information not only threatens universal values but could also affect security, reported National broadcaster NHK. The government plans to set up the new unit in the Cabinet Secretariat in April 2024 to prepare for possible foreign disinformation campaigns. The unit will feature specialists from the foreign and defense ministries, the Cabinet Intelligence and Research Office, and other bodies. They will work together to quickly identify such campaigns and send out accurate information, National broadcaster NHK reported.  In response to recent moves by China and Russia, Japan’s National Security Strategy, approved in December, includes plans to bolster the country’s ability to respond to “warfare in the cognitive domain, including spread of disinformation.” In Asia, Singapore in October 2021 passed a law allowing authorities to restrict online content to prevent foreign interferenc

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