The National Cyber Security Authority (NCSA) has called upon the public to be cautious about the information they get online and avoid falling victim to cyber scams. The call was made during a discussion dubbed “Fighting Misinformation Online” held in partnership with Kigali Global Shapers Hub to raise more awareness on cyber security. The discussions were also part of the “Twumve Twumve” series of youth discussions as Rwanda is still in a month of cyber security awareness. Different panellists such as officials from Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), Rwanda Media Council (RMC), and NCSA among others participated in the discussions that was hosted at Kigali Public Library on November 12. Ghislaine Kayigi – Chief Cybersecurity Standards Officer, at NCSA said that the discussion aimed at ensuring the public is safe online saying that if the people are not protected, they would be vulnerable. “We are doing this to help the people to know different mechanisms which can help them to be safe online and how we access online information because the internet can be used negatively or positively depending on the purpose of the user,” she said. “We shouldnt have to put ourselves in a position of being easily misled. We have to be curious” Kayigi added. The most emphasized prevalent cybercrimes in the country involve online scams ranging from vishing, phishing, and smishing, which respectively means scamming by phone, email and text. According to RIB’s spokesperson, Thierry Murangira misinformation is defined as intentionally, knowingly faking news or rumours, lies, and false statements which are published. He underlined that not all information is considered misinformation because it has to be the criminal intention. “To qualify it as misinformation we check if that person has criminal intent. During the investigation, we check the motive behind it, the kind of words used, and go through all published information. After observing all of these three things, we then confirm the nature of information,” Murangira said. He added that in some cases, RIB takes the decision to detain people after severally warning them to no avail. Emmanuel Mugisha– Executive Secretary of RMC said that all people have to be aware of misinformation spread by ‘quack’ journalists who ignore all media ethics and end up inciting the public. “This is beyond newsrooms so people have to check the facts, the sources among others for them to be safe online and ignore misleading information because some publish it just to get many views or clicks,” Mugisha said Speaking about what the commission is doing to fight this scourge among the journalists, he said that there are different laws that govern the practice and different punishments are in place for those who might cross the line in the name of ‘freedom of expression’.