The US surgeon general has asked technology companies including social media and search engine companies to provide data regarding COVID-19 misinformation on their platforms, according to the New York Times.
It adds that the request is part of the Covid National Preparedness Plan unveiled by the Biden Administration this week that aims to enable the US to better live with the virus.
In particular, Vivek Murthy, the surgeon general, has asked companies to provide data on how many people may have been exposed to COVID-19 misinformation as well as any demographic data that may indicate whether certain groups were more likely to see misinformation, the Times reports. It adds that Murthy is also seeking information on the sources of COVID-19 misinformation and that companies have until May to respond.
"Technology companies now have the opportunity to be open and transparent with the American people about the misinformation on their platforms," Murthy tells the Times. "This is about protecting the nation's health."