Within hours of the August 4, 2020 explosion in Beirut, disinformation surrounding the disaster spread like wildfire on social media. Amidst the fear and destruction, it was almost impossible to discern unsubstantiated rumors from factual information.

EF programs are exploring the roots of disinformation by taking a closer look at how fictional news stories are created and spread. In a recent training aimed at investigative journalists and media producers in the Middle East, experts analyzed disinformation circulating after the Beirut explosion. Experts identified bad actors creating and disseminating disinformation and analyzed their motivations and goals. They also discussed the role open source investigative tools play in debunking disinformation.