How to use IFCN’s WhatsApp fact checker to fight Coronavirus misinformation

WhatsApp icon on an iPhone.Pixabay
  • The International Fact-Checking Network has launched a WhatsApp chatbot to fact check information about Coronavirus.
  • The chatbot allows users to check whether the information received by them is authentic or not.
  • Users can also use the IFCN chatbot to identify fact checkers near them.
The Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted life across the world and over 3.6 million people have been infected. Misinformation has also been a huge problem as social media platforms have been used to spread fake news about Coronavirus.

WhatsApp has over 2 billion monthly active users and there have been several instances where the messaging app has been used to spread fake news. To help users stay safe during the Coronavirus pandemic, the Poynter Institute’s International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) has launched a WhatsApp chatbot that allows them to fact check fake news.

How to fact check using IFCN’s WhatsApp chatbot

  • To use the IFCN’s WhatsApp chatbot save the number on your phone – +1 (727) 29192606 or click here from your phone.
  • Now, send ‘Hi’.
  • You will get the available options and all you need to do is send a number as per the option you want.
Here are the available options you can choose from –

1 – Search for fact checks


2 – Latest fact checks

3 – Tips to fight misinformation

4 – Find Fact-checkers near me


5 – About us

6 – Privacy

  • If you want to check if the information that you have received is fake, send ‘1’.
  • Now, send the keywords or a sentence about the news.
  • The chatbot will reply with related results.
You can also use the chatbot to find fact checkers near you or view the latest reports that have been fact checked.

“Since January, IFCN’s CoronavirusFacts Alliance has been utilizing the capacity of the fact-checking community to help users to sort truth from fiction by debunking falsehoods around the COVID-19 pandemic. The IFCN chatbot will allow users to search for fact checks and get connected with fact-checkers in their countries from their smartphones. The chatbot will also serve as a way to direct people to their local fact-checkers’ websites.” said Baybars Orsek, IFCN's Director.

See also:

WhatsApp will now have its own fact-checking bot to curb misinformation around COVID-19

One of the internet's oldest fact-checking organizations is overwhelmed by coronavirus misinformation - and it could have deadly consequences

How to fact check fake news on WhatsApp

Facebook working with 8 third-party fact checkers to flag misinformation around COVID-19