The world of news is complex – and false stories and images are often widely shared on social media. Blasting News’s editorial team spots the most popular hoaxes and misleading information every week to help you discern truth from falsehood. Here are some of the most shared false claims of this week, of which none are legit.


Spain's Supreme Court did not rule COVID-19 “a bioweapon with a patent”

False claim: Social media users around the world have shared the claim that Spain’s Supreme Court ruled COVID-19 “a bioweapon with a patent”. “Spain is now the 9th country to take its Health Minister to court and win,” reads the posts.


  • A search on Spain's General Council of the Judiciary website, which is responsible for recording updates from all courts in the country, shows that as of March 17, 2023 there is no record of any sentence similar to the claim shared on social media.
  • In a statement to AFP, a spokesperson from Spain's Supreme Court said that “the court has not announced that COVID-19 is a bioweapon with a patent.”
  • Also to AFP, a spokesperson for the Spanish health ministry said that the claim circulating on social media is false and that “Spain’s health ministers have not been involved in any court case.”


Bank of America has not limited withdrawals to $200 per day “to avoid running out of cash”

False claim: Social media users in the United States have shared the claim that Bank of America reportedly limited the amount of money customers can withdraw from their accounts to $200 per day “to avoid running out of cash.”


  • On its official website, Bank of America reports that the amount its customers can withdraw from an ATM “is based on several factors, including limits that are set based on your card or account type, availability of funds in your account at the time the withdrawal is requested and in some cases the amount the ATM is capable of dispensing.”
  • In a statement to AFP, Bank of America's Washington D.C. branch employees said the institution is not limiting cash withdrawals to $200 per day.
  • The false claims come amid the collapse in recent days of Silicon Valley Bank and Silvergate Bank, and the announcement of an intervention in Signature Bank, which sparked turmoil in financial markets around the world.
  • On its website, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), an independent agency created by the U.S. Congress to maintain stability and public confidence in the nation's financial system, states that FDIC deposit insurance “is automatic for any deposit account opened at an FDIC-insured bank” and that “deposits are insured up to at least $250,000 per depositor, per FDIC-insured bank, per category of ownership.”

United Kingdom

The NHS has not removed the word “woman” from its websites

False claim: Social media users in the UK have shared the claim that the NHS, the British public health system, has reportedly removed the word “woman” from its official webpages about pregnancy and cervical and ovarian cancer.


  • Although some NHS webpages have recently been updated with gender-inclusive language, the word “woman” is still present in guidance on pregnancy and cervical and ovarian cancer.
  • The webpage with guidance on ovarian cancer, for example, which previously referred only to “women,” now reads: “Anyone with ovaries can get ovarian cancer. This includes women, trans men, non-binary people and intersex people with ovaries.”
  • In a statement to Reuters, an NHS spokesperson said: “The NHS website provides information for everyone and we keep the pages under continual review to ensure they use language that is inclusive, respectful, and relevant to the people reading it.”


Thai army chief has not “declared war on Myanmar”

False claim: Social media users in Thailand have shared the claim that the country's army chief has “declared war on Myanmar.” According to the posts, which feature an image of Thai General Apirat Kongsompong, he reportedly promised to seize Myanmar's Karen state, which borders Thailand.


  • Contrary to what social media posts imply, Apirat Kongsompong left his position as head of the Thai army in 2020. The person who has held the position since September 2020 is General Narongpan Jitkaewtae.
  • In a statement to AFP, a spokesperson for the Thai army said the claims about a declaration of war against Myanmar and the intention to seize Karen state are both “Fake News.”
  • Karen state has long seen heavy fighting between Myanmar's military and local rebel groups, a situation that has worsened considerably since the military's coup in 2021, driving a wave of refugees to neighboring Thailand.


Government has not announced cars without ABS brakes and airbag will be seized

False claim: Social media users in Brazil have shared the claim that the country’s government has recently announced that vehicles that do not have airbags and anti-lock braking system (ABS) will be seized.


  • In a statement to the Brazilian fact-checking agency Lupa, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Transportation said that the claim is unfounded and that only vehicles manufactured from January 1, 2014 need to have airbags and ABS brakes.
  • According to a Contran (National Traffic Council) resolution published in 2009, car manufacturers are obliged to include airbags and ABS brakes in all the vehicles produced in the country from 2014 on.
  • No resolution, however, establishes the mandatory installation of ABS brakes and airbags in vehicles manufactured before 2014 or the seizure of vehicles that do not have this equipment.