Communications Ministry Is Working With Meta To Develop WhatsApp Chatbot To Combat Fake News

This feature, slated for launch by the end of this month, will function as a platform enabling users to verify the authenticity of information shared within the app.
(credit: TechTRP)

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The WhatsApp Chatbot feature, set to launch by the end of this month, is being developed by Meta in collaboration with the Communications Ministry.

Bernama reports that according to Minister Fahmi Fadzil, the Chatbot feature will function as a platform for users to authenticate shared information on WhatsApp.

Fahmi said he has personally tested the feature and is satisfied with its performance but highlighted the need to finalise certain technical aspects with Meta before its launch.

The motivation behind developing this feature, as explained by Fahmi, is to combat the proliferation of fake news and defamatory content on WhatsApp.

The integration of a solution within the app itself will allow users to engage with the Chatbot for message authenticity verification, with feedback expected within one or two minutes.

For verification responses, Fahmi mentioned the utilisation of reports from the JomCheck group, comprising several non-governmental organisations, including MyCheck from Bernama (Malaysian National News Agency).

Regarding language capabilities, he assured that the WhatsApp Chatbot facility will respond to inquiries in multiple languages, including Bahasa Melayu, English, Chinese, and Tamil.

However, he noted that the Chatbot is currently limited to text-based verification. It does not have the capability to check and verify documents, videos, or images at this stage, but there are hopes for such functionalities in the future.

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