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2024 Elections Misinformation Tracking Center

Our team of analysts will keep you up to date as we cover misinformation surrounding this year’s elections in the U.S., EU, and elsewhere around the world

By Sam Howard, Chiara Vercellone, McKenzie Sadeghi, Macrina Wang, Coalter Palmer, and Leonie Pfaller | Last updated April 19, 2024


NewsGuard is monitoring the spread of misinformation this year as voters in the U.S., the European Union, and other countries around the world head to the polls to choose their elected leaders. To date, NewsGuard’s global team of misinformation analysts have identified 27 myths spreading across social media, and identified 115 sites spreading those myths.

In the weeks immediately after the 2020 U.S. election, we identified 166 sites spreading voting misinformation, and we have found that some of these false claims are still circulating even three years later. We have identified similarly baseless allegations of voter fraud — about mail-in voting, election machines, and vote-counting, among other topics — in national elections including in France, Germany, and Italy, and again in the U.S. during its 2022 midterms.

As new or recycled false claims emerge this year, we will regularly update this page to reflect the latest myths and trends. And to go deeper, subscribe to our Media Intelligence Dashboard or sign up for our free newsletter Reality Check.

Monitoring Election Misinformation Sources:

To detect new and emerging false claims, NewsGuard’s team monitors publishers that our analysts have determined have a history of repeatedly publishing false or egregiously misleading claims related to elections. To date, our database tracks: 

  • 963 websites flagged for repeatedly publishing false or egregiously misleading claims about elections
  • 793 social media accounts and video channels associated with publishers flagged for repeatedly publishing false or egregiously misleading claims about elections
  • 1,192 partisan sites masquerading as politically neutral local news outlets; many of these sites are secretly funded by political organizations without clear disclosure to readers, and adopt innocuous names like “The Philadelphia Leader” or “The Copper Courier”

Below is a selection of election misinformation trends identified by NewsGuard in its Reality Check newsletter and in confidential briefings for NewsGuard clients:

No, the Biden Administration Is Not Secretly Flying Migrants to the U.S. as Voters

Conservative commentators, websites, and X users with thousands of followers falsely claimed that the Biden administration last year secretly flew over 300,000 undocumented migrants from Latin America into 43 airports across the U.S., as part of an election-fraud scheme.

“This is categorically false,” White House spokesperson Angelo Fernández Hernández said in a March 6, 2024, X post, in response to claims that the Biden administration is secretly flying migrants to the U.S.

It is true that thousands of migrants have traveled to the U.S. under the “Processes for Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguans, and Venezuelans” program that was launched by the Biden administration in October 2022 to accommodate Venezuelan migrants who are escaping economic collapse or political oppression. The program was expanded in January 2023 to include migrants from Cuba, Nicaragua, and Haiti.

The existence of the program is not secret, though the administration has not disclosed the locations of where the migrants have arrived. The government regularly issues public updates on the total number of migrants allowed into the U.S. under the program without disclosing where. About 350,000 migrants had entered the U.S. under the program between October 2022 and January 2024, according to the most recent federal data available in March 2024. 

Participants pay for their own airfare and enter the country legally under the program, according to White House officials. Moreover, contrary to claims that the program is part of an election fraud scheme, non-citizens are not allowed to vote in federal elections, according to federal law.

Under the program, up to 30,000 migrants may enter the U.S. each month, as long as someone legally living in the U.S. — a family member, friend, or company — files an application with the U.S. government requesting that the migrant be allowed in the country, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website.

If the request is approved, migrants can apply for a travel authorization that will allow them to enter the United States by air within 90 days. Migrants can remain in the U.S. for two years under the program.

NewsGuard’s March 13, 2024, Misinformation Risk Briefing

Iran State Media Falsely Claim Trump Said 9/11 Was ‘Work of the U.S.’ During 2024 Campaign Event

Donald Trump has advanced lots of conspiracy theories, but this isn’t one of them. Iran state media, quickly followed by the Kremlin, misrepresented Trump’s remarks during a campaign victory speech in New Hampshire, falsely claiming he said the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attack was an inside job.

Iranian state-run media outlets circulated a video clip with the title “Trump: There was no attack on the World Trade Center towers.” In the text of the article and the subtitles of the video, the Iranian outlets reported that Trump said: “There was no attack on the towers of the World Trade Center,” and “The 9/11 attack was the work of the United States.” 

Actually, at no point in his Jan. 22, 2024, New Hampshire primary victory speech did Trump deny the attacks on the World Trade Center or claim that 9/11 was an inside job.

The clip, taken from Trump’s speech in New Hampshire, shows that Trump said the U.S. did not suffer any deadly terrorist attacks during his time in office, crediting his travel ban on predominantly Muslim countries. 

“When I was [in office] for four years, I wanted to talk so much. We had no terrorism, no attacks, we had nothing, we had the Trump travel ban, we call it the terror ban … I talk about it all the time, we had no attacks, we had no World Trade Center,” Trump said to his audience.

NewsGuard’s Feb. 2, 2024, Reality Check newsletter

Pro-China Commentators Claim Pro-Taiwanese Independence Candidate Is Ineligible

Pro-China social media users claimed that Taiwanese vice presidential candidate Hsiao Bi-khim, whose party staunchly supports Taiwanese independence, could not run in the country’s January 2024 presidential election because she also holds American citizenship.

Hsiao ran on the ticket of presidential frontrunner Lai Ching-te for the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, which is known for its defiance of Beijing and its stance that Taiwan (also known as the Republic of China) is effectively independent from mainland China. (Hsiao’s ticket ultimately won the election.)

Taiwanese law prohibits political candidates from holding dual citizenship. However, Hsiao, who was born in Japan to a Taiwanese father and an American mother, gave up her U.S. citizenship in 2002, as recorded in a July 2002 notice by the U.S. Federal Register. “First of all, I never gave up my citizenship of the Republic of China [Taiwan] … However, I gave up my American citizenship in 2002, and I have all the relevant supporting documents on hand,” Hsiao said in a Dec. 5, 2023, video on her Facebook page. 

Taiwan’s Ministry of the Interior stated on Dec. 4, 2023, that all current presidential candidates and their running mates comply with citizenship requirements.

NewsGuard’s Dec. 7, 2023, State-Sponsored Disinformation Risk Briefing

Below is a selection of false narratives about 2024 elections spreading around the globe that NewsGuard has identified and debunked in its Misinformation Fingerprints catalog:

MYTH: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was arrested at the European Parliament


There is no evidence that European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was arrested at the European Parliament. An image appearing to show von der Leyen getting arrested by two police officers was digitally altered.

There are no news reports or other records of Von der Leyen ever being arrested in the chamber of the European Parliament. A NewsGuard search of European news media found no reports of such an incident.

As first reported by German news agency dpa, the original photo shows the 2021 arrest of Kate Bossi, a woman who refused to wear a mask at a regional school board meeting in New Hampshire.

The original image was first published by the New Hampshire Union Leadernewspaper with a May 25, 2021, article titled “New charge for maskless woman arrested at Timberlane school meeting,” dpa reported. Von der Leyen’s face and a background image of the Parliament’s plenary chamber in Strasbourg were later digitally added to the photo.

MYTH: Super Tuesday social media outages were part of an election interference scheme


There is no evidence that Meta social media outages, which coincided with Super Tuesday primary elections, were part of a scheme to interfere with voting in state primaries. None of the social media posts or articles that advanced this false narrative identified by NewsGuard explained how the Meta outages might be linked to an election interference strategy.

After the outages occurred, an anonymous senior official in the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency told NBC News on March 5, 2024, that the agency was “not aware of any specific election nexus or any specific malicious cyber activity.”

In a blog post analyzing the outages, ThousandEyes, a team of researchers at global cybersecurity firm Cisco, concluded that because that Meta’s servers “remain[ed] reachable” during the outages, and because users who attempted to log in were nonetheless receiving error messages, the incident was likely caused by an issue with a “backend service, such as authentication.”

Netblocks, a London-based cybersecurity watchdog that monitors internet outages, said on X that the outages occurred in multiple countries and were unconnected to “country-level internet disruptions or filtering.” Meta spokesperson Andy Stone said in a March 5, 2024, X post that the outages were caused by a “technical issue,” although he did not provide additional details.

MYTH: Multiple stabbing incidents occurred at polling stations on day of Taiwan’s presidential elections


Contrary to online reports by apparently inauthentic social media accounts that are part of a network favoring China (and explicitly opposing Taiwan’s tough-on-China ruling party, the Democratic Progressive Party), there has been no credible reporting that any stabbings occurred in Tainan, Taiwan, on Jan. 13, 2024 — the day of the island’s presidential elections.

Tainan’s city government wrote in a Jan. 13, 2024, Chinese statement on its website: “The order of the city’s polling sites so far is good, and police forces are protecting the safety of voters at all times. There has not been any violent stabbing incident as rumored on the Internet.”

The false claim on stabbings gained extensive traction after Taiwanese news site My Formosa published an article citing the social media posts that advanced the claim. The news site told Agence France-Presse that it “immediately took down the story” after determining that it was not true.