With more of us spending time at home and online, many of us feel compelled to conduct research ourselves.
The issue is that when people are under heightened stress and they want to resolve uncertainty, we can lose our ability to judge information effectively.
This means we may not be able to recognise reliable information, especially when search engines and social media are engineered to prioritise content that is popular over content that is factual.
Conspiracy theories tend to be grounded in unusual coincidences or misunderstood science, and they use highly emotional language to appeal to others.
If you are finding it difficult to know where to turn for the facts, there are helpful resources to support you.
Full Fact is the UK's independent fact checking organisation, which checks and corrects facts reporting in the news as well as claims which circulate on social media.
The Act Early website helps young people stay safe online via social media and through online games and helps communities report online graphic or violent extremist material.
King’s College London have a helpful blog called “Investigating the most convincing Covid 19 conspiracy theories” by Clinical Neuroscience PhD student, Anna McLaughlin, which provides helpful links to resources to debunk the flawed science behind the most convincing Covid 19 conspiracy theories.
Contact Havering Council’s Community Resilience Team, who monitor online safety and provide information from trusted sources to protect Havering residents, via emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.