Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon has expressed concern over the handling of bank malfunction incidents during the Senate hearing on the recent disruptions of banking operations experienced by Bank of the Philippine Islands and Banco de Oro.
“We must be very careful not only on the part of the Senate but also on the part of the media,” Drilon said, “and we should not speculate because we must reassure our people of the stability of the banking industry.”
The biggest threat to the “stability of the banking industry” are some irresponsible elements of social media, who were cited for having spread rumors damaging to the banking industry through fake news of P12 billion being credited to their accounts.
“Those who posted P12 billion, P8 billion, P1 billion—they are all false,” BPI executive vice president Ramon Jocson said, adding “the documents they presented to the public and to the TV stations and radio stations were all doctored and fake.”
Sources said when checked out by the public, the P12-billion hoax and other altered information and screen shots did not actually generate much traction and notice among others involved in social media.
The incredulously fake news are not readily accepted by the public in general as they can see. Jocson said the claim of a client that her money ballooned to more than P12.4 billion after the glitch was impossible as the client must have a P200-million deposit a day to have at least P1 billion in an account for five days.
To emphasize how much of a concern fake news could be destructive, Senator Joel Villanueva filed a bill seeking to “penalize any person or group who maliciously spread false news in traditional and online media (and) fines ranging from P100,000 to P5 million and one to five years imprisonment are the penalties specified.”
In addition, “any mass media enterprise or social media platform that fails, neglects or refuses to remove false news will be fined P10 million to P20 million and face ten to 20 years imprisonment.”
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