Saturday, July 1, 2023

‘Staggering Overreach’ Govt Disinformation Unit Flagged Green MP over Alleged Covid Criticisms; Three Years After a Pandemic Shut Down the Country, COVID-Related Phone Scams are Once Again on the Rise, and other C-Virus related stories

Martin Pope/Getty Images
‘Staggering Overreach’ Govt Disinformation Unit Flagged Green MP over Alleged Covid Criticisms:
The British government’s Counter Disinformation Unit repeatedly logged statements from a leftist Green Party MP during the Chinese coronavirus crisis, according to information obtained by the Big Brother Watch campaign group.
Green Party MP Caroline Lucas was swept up in reports gathered by the UK government’s Counter Disinformation Unit (CDU) and the now-defunct rapid response unit (RRU) media monitoring service, according to The Guardian newspaper.
The revelations, which were uncovered through a subject access request from Lucas and the privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, showed that the government had logged statements from the parliamentarian in an April 2020 report on “Covid mis/disinformation” over comments criticising the lack of pandemic preparation and how the government was purchasing medical equipment.
In another instance, statements from Lucas arguing that coronavirus vaccines should be given to struggling countries before booster shots were handed out to Britons were recorded by the since defunct media-monitoring Rapid Response Unit, which claimed that Lucas’s comments were akin to “vaccine hesitancy”.
Lucas, who is set to stand down from parliament before the next general election, accused the government of “staggering overreach” and has called for an investigation into the matter.
“The right of citizens to share entirely valid and objective criticisms of Government Ministers without fear of the consequences is a cornerstone of our democracy, and must be protected. If these disinformation units focussed their efforts on genuine disinformation, dangerous conspiracy theories and foreign hostility, rather than my tweets, our politics might be in a better place,” Lucas said. --->READ MORE HERE
Getty Images
Three years after a pandemic shut down the country, COVID-related phone scams are once again on the rise:
COVID-related phone scams are spiking again several years after the COVID-19 pandemic led much of the United States to shut down for a lengthy period, according to a new report from robocall-blocking company Hiya.
Hiya told Insider it's received hundreds of incident reports from its users who described scammers trying to obtain the information on the back of their Medicare cards.
Scammers "told me COVID test kits were free, then billed Medicare $91.00," one Hiya user reported in the app.
They "asked for my Medicare Part B card information," wrote another Hiya user who said that scammers, "said I was pre-approved to receive free COVID test kits, but only if I could provide my name & full address."
Seeing these Medicare/COVID-19 test kit scams rising in frequency, the Federal Trade Commission released a "consumer alert" earlier in June warning Medicare users to never give away their Medicare number over the phone.
"Callers who offer 'free supplies,' 'no-cost' lab tests, or say you need a replacement Medicare card are scammers trying to get your Medicare number," the FTC wrote. "Don't give them any information."
The FTC said in its report that "frauds like this, along with mistakes and abuse," cost Medicare around $60 billion each year. --->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to relevant/related stories and resources:

Do at-home COVID tests still work? New research suggests they are less effective than thought

Church attendance below pre-pandemic levels: Gallup

USA TODAY: Coronavirus Updates

WSJ: Coronavirus Live Updates

YAHOO NEWS: Coronavirus Live Updates

NEW YORK POST: Coronavirus The Latest

If you like what you see, please "Like" and/or Follow us on FACEBOOK here, GETTR here, and TWITTER here.

No comments: