《TAIPEI TIMES》 Online wiretapping rumors untrue, prosecutors say
The building that houses the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office in Taipei is pictured on April 21 last year. Photo: Tu Chien-jung, Taipei Times
COGNITIVE WARFARE: The Democratic Progressive Party has continuously warned the public about disinformation efforts and people would not be easily tricked, a legislator said
By Jake Chung / Staff writer, with CNA
Internet rumors that the government wiretapped thousands of people are untrue and part of malignant foreign forces conducting cognitive warfare, the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office said yesterday, adding that it has instructed the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office to investigate.
A post on online platform Baoliao Commune （爆料公社）, showed apparently false information that it “purchased on the dark net” about politicians and others who had engaged in improper wiretapping, including the office in charge, time and officials’ names.
No personal identifiers of people who might have been the target of a wiretap could be garnered from the post, which apparently had been tampered with, the Criminal Investigation Division said.
The Ministry of Justice Investigation Bureau said that similar false information had been circulated online in 2021, which also showed evidence of having been doctored.
The information was sourced from foreign servers, the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office said, adding that an initial investigation showed it used simplified Chinese characters, the Gregorian calendar, and made-up titles and telephone numbers.
This is evidently an attempt by foreign forces to mislead Taiwanese and cause internal conflict, it said, urging people to dismiss rumors and refrain from spreading misinformation.
Separately, the Chinese Nationalist Party （KMT） presented documents alleging that the Democratic Progressive Party （DPP） acceded to US demands to allow imports of US pork containing residual ractopamine.
However, the concession was insufficient to have Taiwan included as a founding member of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity, the KMT said.
Vice Premier Cheng Wen-tsan （鄭文燦） countered that Taiwan-US ties are on the right track and the KMT was “pulling the government’s leg.”
Even if the documents were accurate, the channels of their procurement should be investigated, Cheng said.
The Executive Yuan’s Office of Trade Negotiations said that despite Taiwan’s inability to join the trade pact, the government has made significant progress with the US-Taiwan Initiative on 21st Century Trade and efforts to avoid double taxation.
Minister of the Interior Lin Yu-chang （林右昌） said that the public should gauge the authenticity of information and seek to verify their sources, as misinformation is rife in the run-up to elections.
The DPP said that forces seek to undermine the government’s credibility and goad political parties into outright confrontation as voting day draws near.
DPP Legislator Chuang Jui-hsiung （莊瑞雄） said that the party has continuously warned the public about efforts to undermine the government’s credibility and sow discord.
Chuang said he believes the public would not easily be tricked.
Prosecutors should look into reports of former and serving borough wardens, and organization leaders going on free visits to China, he said.
Borough wardens should refrain from contravening the law for minor gains, he added.