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Social Media: Disinformation

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN 47706, tabled on 5 September 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of reports about content or user accounts made to social media providers by Government units established to tackle disinformation resulted in action being taken by the social media providers in the last 12 months.

Answered on

20 September 2022

The Government takes the issue of disinformation very seriously. The Counter Disinformation Unit team, based in DCMS, works to understand the scope, scale and reach of disinformation and works with a range of partners, including social media platforms, to tackle it.

The primary purpose of the team is not to spot every instance of disinformation across all social media platforms, but rather to understand overall trends and coordinated attempts to artificially manipulate the information environment. When the Unit does identify particular pieces of harmful content which may violate platforms’ terms of service these are referred to the relevant platform for consideration, who in turn decide what action to take.

As an operational matter it is not appropriate for the government to publicly provide details of content reported to platforms as doing so would give malign actors insight into our capabilities.

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