As misinformation reaches new extremes, Greece has pledged to take a series of preemptive measures to protect its nation from the adverse effects of fake news.

The National Herald reported that the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Digital Governance confirmed plans to create an artificial intelligence (AI)-based platform to combat misinformation.

The AI-based platform, designed to identify and block fake stories on Greek social media spaces, is the first attempt by the government to employ emerging technologies in the fight against fake news. A key focus of the platform is the stifling of false information deemed harmful to the nation’s interest.

Following a default on its debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the country has been plagued by political instability, widening income inequality, and a disruption of social cohesion. Greek authorities note that the myriad problems faced by the country are only amplified by fake news, prompting the pledge of a nationwide crackdown.

The planned platform will go beyond mere keyword recognition to include AI capabilities for understanding the context of messages. A contextual understanding of content is expected to increase the government’s efficiency in spotting fake news stories that may pass the scrutiny of tools based on keyword recognition.

There are plans for the incoming AI tool to be employed in studies at the Hellenic Diplomatic Academy to train future diplomats on the impact of AI on social media.

Proponents of the new AI-based platform argue that the tool will not be used as a device to stifle negative reports against the government but will remain impartial.

Previous attempts to crackdown against fake news via penalties for media houses met stern criticism from the press, forcing the government to explore new avenues to prevent the spread of misinformation with emerging technologies.

AI advisory team

In late 2023, Greece announced plans to establish an AI advisory committee to iron out its national AI strategy.

The committee, approved by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, comprises experts from various disciplines, including ethics, science, engineering, and IT. According to the announcement, the end goal of the Commission is the protection of Greek consumers and the design of a robust framework to guide the activities of AI firms in the country.

“We will also work in a coordinated manner so that Greece can be a member of the international initiatives for AI that are being developed within the framework of the International Organization of Artificial Intelligence,” said committee member Constantinos Daskalakis.

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