ISIS Linked Account Easily Spread Propaganda On Facebook

ISIS Linked Account Easily Spread Propaganda On Facebook

181 - A new study has revealed that many Facebook accounts linked to the ISIS group can still avoid detection on the platform.

The research was conducted by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD), which tracked more than 288 accounts that were connected to a particular ISIS network for three months. According to the study, ISIS accounts can find loopholes in Facebook's automatic and manual moderation systems and successfully spread their propaganda.

The network calls itself Upload Fuouaris. According to ISD researchers, many accounts have followers in thousands, and more than one third is controlled by one username, “Luqmen Ben Tachafin, which comprised the core of the network.”

How can a related ISIS Facebook account avoid detection?

Pro-ISIS Facebook accounts take part in account hijacking, content hiding, coordinated attacks on Facebook pages, hashtag hijacking, and similar illegal activities. Also, videos shared by groups can collect more than 34,000 views collectively.

Some video tutorials for fellow terrorists that show how one can exploit security protocols and hijacked accounts. In one case, the researchers found a bomb-making tutorial in an Indonesian language account.

ISIS linked Facebook accounts

To avoid Facebook's ban, ISIS supporters made several modifications to their content, such as breaking text, using irregular punctuation, blurring the ISIS brand, and using Facebook video effects. They also mark content with logos and intros from the mainstream media.

Facebook ISIS report

According to the study, ISIS's Facebook network planned and launched "raids" on popular Facebook pages, some belonging to the US military and political leaders. One attack was on US President Donald Trump's Facebook page, where fake African-American accounts flooded posts with comments such as “weapons not only for the white we can shot them too #war_timeweapons not only for the white we can shot them too #war_time.”

The aftermath

Facebook says that most accounts have been deleted, and other accounts are under review.

“We have no tolerance for terrorist propaganda on our platform and remove content and accounts that violate our policy as soon as we identify them.” a Facebook spokesperson told ISD.

Read More: How To Download Facebook Videos Online? (Public and Private Videos)

However, as the researchers note, Facebook will have to be more efficient and continuously update its moderation policies. “Without a clear understanding of these networks and their behavior, responses reliant on takedowns do little to quell ISIS-support expansion across our primary platforms.”

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