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With the ongoing global outbreak of COVID-19, governments worldwide race against time to contain not only the spread of the pathogen, but also the flurry of fake news, with fears that online misinformation, if left unchecked, could be more infectious than the disease itself.

One of the weapons in the Singapore government’s arsenal to contain the infectiousness of fake news, is the Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act (“POFMA”), colloquially known as Singapore’s “fake news law”.

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, we have seen increasing activity on the fake news front in Singapore, with various clarification statements issued by the government, and various directions issued under the POFMA.

Coincidentally, during this period, the Singapore High Court also delivered its first two decisions under the POFMA, just two weeks apart.

This newsletter unpacks some of these recent developments in Singapore’s online falsehoods laws.



Andy Leck is the managing principal of Baker McKenzie.Wong & Leow. Mr. Leck is recognised by the world’s leading industry and legal publications as a leader in his field. Asian Legal Business notes that he “always gives good, quick advice, [is] client-focused and has strong technical knowledge for his areas of practice”. Alongside his current role as managing principal, Mr. Leck has held several leadership positions in the Firm and externally as a leading IP practitioner. He currently serves on the International Trademark Association's Board of Directors and is a member of the Singapore Copyright Tribunal.