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.

Please send us tips or claims to check at this email or at this X/Twitter account @BNFactCheck. Read this page to better understand our submission guidelines.

U.S.-Canada border blast not terror-related

False claim: In posts with millions of views on X, right-wing figures such as Republican Senator Ted Cruz and far-right activist Laura Loomer claimed that the explosion on Rainbow Bridge in Niagara Falls was confirmed by authorities as a terrorist attack.


  • In a statement to the press on Wednesday evening, New York State Governor Kathy Hochul said that there were no indications that the incident was a terrorist attack.
  • In a post on X on Thursday, the FBI in Buffalo informed: “A search of the scene revealed no explosive materials, and no terrorism nexus was identified. The matter has been turned over to the Niagara Falls Police Department as a traffic investigation.”
  • According to Hochul, the car involved in the incident was going at an “extraordinarily high rate of speed” when it crashed into a median, flew over an 8-foot-high fence and struck a border crossing booth. Two people in the car were killed.

Video does not show soldiers placing an Israeli flag at al-Shifa hospital in Gaza

False claim: Social media users have shared a video showing soldiers placing an Israeli flag on top of a building.

According to the posts, the image was recorded at the al-Shifa hospital, the largest in Gaza, which was invaded by Israeli forces on November 15, on the grounds that the site was used by Hamas to prepare military operations and hide hostages and weapons, something denied by the Palestinian group.


  • At the beginning of the viral footage, it is possible to see the letters “UN” painted on the ground of the rooftop, indicating a link between the building and the United Nations.
  • A search on Google Maps indicates that the letters “UN” painted on the rooftop do not match the images of the al-Shifa hospital, but rather another building less than a mile away.
  • In a statement to Reuters and Politifact, Juliette Touma, communications director for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), said that the viral video actually shows an UNRWA school in Gaza City.

UN has not been granted “powers to regulate all internet content”

False claim: Social media users around the world have shared an article claiming that the United Nations has been given “powers to regulate all internet content.” The text cites as the source of the information a report by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) titled “Guidelines for the governance of digital platforms: safeguarding freedom of expression and access to information through a multi-stakeholder approach.”


  • The article shared on social media was originally published on November 10, 2023 on the website The People's Voice – previously called Your News Wire and NewsPunch –, famous for promoting disinformation and conspiracy theories.
  • Published by UNESCO earlier this month and available in six languages, the report does not state at any point that the UN – or any of its agencies – have been given powers to regulate internet content.
  • In its introduction, the report states that its mission is to describe “a set of duties, responsibilities and roles for States, digital platforms, intergovernmental organizations, civil society, media, academia, the technical community and other stakeholders to enable the environment where freedom of expression and information are in the core of digital platforms governance processes.”

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has not banned the use of the hijab in schools

False claim: Social media users have shared posts in Spanish claiming that Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni have banned the use of the hijab – the veil Muslim women wear to cover their hair and neck – in public and private schools across the country.


  • A search in the archives of the Gazzetta Ufficiale, which collects all the laws and decrees passed by the Italian government, finds no indication of a supposed ban on wearing the hijab in schools.
  • There’s also no mention of the supposed new law on the Italian government's website and official social media accounts or in the country's main media outlets.

Video does not show that the water of the Nile River has turned red

False claim: Social media users around the world have shared a video showing a large body of red water with mountains visible in the background.

According to the posts, the images show the River Nile in Egypt. Many of the posts claim that the event is a sign of the end times.


  • A reverse image search shows that a series of pictures and videos with images from the same location have been published on the web in recent years. In one of the videos, posted in June 2017 on the YouTube channel of the Aventura South America travel agency, it is possible to see the same set of mountains in the background that appears at timestamp 0:18 in the viral video on social media.
  • According to the description of the publication, the images were recorded at Laguna Roja (Red Lagoon), located in northern Chile.
  • According to information published on Chile Travel, Chile's official tourism website, “although there is no conclusive explanation, scientific research suggests that the red color of the lagoon is due to the presence of sediments and the Chlamynodephris microalgae.”