VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Report on Duterte signing law granting P50K-bonus for SSS members a HOAX

A story circulating on social media claiming President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law giving Social Security System (SSS) members a P50,000-bonus, is not true.

Published by websites unlibuzzmaniac.com and sss2019.balitangpinoy.live, the report bore the headline, “P50,000 Bonus Para Sa Lahat Ng Miyembo Ng SSS Pinirmahan Na Ni Pang. Duterte. Panooring Kung Paano Ninyo Ito Makukuha (P50,000 bonus for all members of SSS has been signed by Pres. Duterte. Watch to learn how you can claim it).”

The same exact story was published by the two websites and indicated it was “Published Today,” but a look at their source codes reveals it is undated.

No such law has been signed by Duterte.

SSS, through its official Facebook page, also debunked the reports in an advisory on Sept. 7 and called it “fake news.” The state-run insurance system then advised netizens to follow only its official Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube pages.

Unlibuzzmaniac.com and sss2019.balitangpinoy.liv’s fabricated report operates similar to hoaxes previously flagged by VERA Files. Apart from the fake, attention-grabbing headline, the story also carried at least 10 advertisements on its page, and a video that stops playing after about six seconds -- instructing viewers to first share the story to continue watching.

The short clip, which shows two hosts introducing a show about SSS, can be traced to a Jan. 10 episode of Usapang SSS, a program aired on state-owned People’s Television. The show, which features relevant news about the agency, made no mention of a P50,000 bonus for members.

The fake story surfaced around the same time SSS reported collecting P849 million in housing loans for the first half of the year.

Unlibuzzmaniac.com, created in August 2016, could have reached over 13 million social media users with its fake post, the top traffic generators to the story from social media being Facebook page Yamyam Team Abroad Official, and public Facebook groups Taga DAVAO ORIENTAL ka kung… and trabaho agad ang hanap ko.

On the other hand, balitangpinoy.live’s fake report could have reached more than 12,000 people. Its top traffic generators from social media were Duterte Supporters Movement, Manila Solid Duterte Supporters, and Team Ro-Ro: Rodrigo Duterte & Ronald Dela Rosa.

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