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Online Safety Day: Why Use Fact-Checking

World Safer Internet Day is celebrated on Tuesday of the second week of February, this year on February 8th. The event appeared at the initiative of the Insafe organization in 2004. Initially, the main task of the Safe Internet Day is to establish a dialogue between Internet service users, government agencies, public organizations and business representatives in order to raise awareness about the safe and responsible use of the Internet (especially among children and young people).

On this day, it is important for people to be reminded of online safety. In the flow of information from the Internet, we get a lot of unconfirmed facts, fake news, controversial opinions that create a false picture of the world, and also add to our nervous tension.

“Never in the history of mankind has our brain had to process as much information as it does today. We are so busy processing it that we lose the ability to think and feel. Moreover, most of this information is superficial,” American psychiatrist Edward Hallowell, comments on the overdose of information on the Internet.

In order not to lose analytical thinking, it is important to check the information. It's time to turn on fact-checking - checking facts and information.

How to do it:

  • use several sources of information when forming an opinion; 
  • find the source - official websites, a competent commentator, speaker; 
  • more trust in information in which different opinions are voiced;

In addition to emotional stress, being on the Internet without certain rules can be dangerous for your privacy and financial situation. Do not forget that there are a lot of scammers on the network, so try to follow the following rules:

  • Do not save your mail password on other people's computers, because this is your confidential information;
  • Do not save documents with passwords from mail, bank cards on the desktop or in the public domain.
  • Do not open suspicious links that are sent to you by friends or in the mail as advertising.

- Never forward bank card details and card expiration date and CVV code. Today, the most common type of online fraud is banking fraud. When people receive a call on a mobile phone and, under the guise of a relative in trouble, they are asked to send money. People lose thousands of hryvnias and only then realize that they were deceived. You can not blindly respond to such calls and messages. First, call personally the person on whose behalf you are being contacted.

Try to always keep an analytical approach.

Today, in the age of a pandemic and a tense situation in society, any negative information in a large volume can unbalance a person, make him worry. Therefore, it is important to consume the same news in a dosed manner. Zaporozhye psychotherapist Anna Prishutova said that in order to maintain your mental health, you can use the concept of "information environmental friendliness." That is, to filter the information flow, to trust information taken only from trusted sources.

Also, according to the psychotherapist, communication with loved ones, rest and physical activity will help to keep calm and avoid anxiety and panic. Devote more time to yourself and your family.