July 19, 2021: Vaccine misinformation, Facebook, Wildfires, Israel spyware, UK COVID restrictions
Reuters, 19 Jul 2021
Five stories to know for July 19: Vaccine misinformation, Facebook, Wildfires, Israeli spyware, England restrictions
1. U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy stood by federal guidance that those fully vaccinated against COVID-19 no longer needed to wear masks, while blaming social media companies for fueling vaccine misinformation.
2. Facebook defended itself against Joe Biden's assertion that the social media platform is "killing people" by allowing misinformation about coronavirus vaccines to proliferate, saying the facts tell a different story.
3. Gusty winds and dry, hot weather are increasing the size of dozens of wildfires scorching vast stretches of Oregon, California and other western U.S. states, authorities said.
4. An Israeli company's spyware was used in attempted and successful hacks of 37 smartphones belonging to journalists, government officials and human rights activists around the world, according to an investigation by 17 media organizations.
5. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson's 'freedom day' ending over a year of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions in England was marred by surging infections.
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