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Facebook Pulls Down Fake Accounts Spreading Hate in UK

Admitting that people want private, encrypted services, Zuckerberg said Facebook will become like the mobile messaging platform which is more secure with end-to-end encryption

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Facebook: The platform allows for different types of content, which makes it ideal for diverse, interactive and entertaining content.

Facebook has taken down over 100 fake accounts that were used to spread hate in the UK. These pages and groups frequently changed their names to get more followers for furthering their agenda of spreading hate speeches and divisive comments.

The network, spread over Facebook and photo-sharing site Instagram, used fake accounts to pose as both far-right activists and their opponents.

The pages, operating with names such as “Anti Far Right Extremists”, “Atheists Research Centre” and “Politicalised”, garnered almost 175,000 followers on the social networking platform, while another 4,500 followers were found on Instagram, according to Facebook’s Head of Cybersecurity Policy Nathaniel Gleicher.

“It ran pages and groups whose names frequently changed in order to drum up more followers and operated fake accounts to engage in hate speech and spread divisive comments on both sides of UK political debate,” Facebook was quoted as saying by The Guardian late on Thursday.

Facebook
Facebook, social media. Pixabay

The operation was reportedly intended “to counter far-right representations of Muslims, LGBT communities and minorities in the UK”.

The social networking giant took similar action against 31 accounts and pages in Romania for engaging in hate speech and making divisive comments, according to Sky News.

Also Read- Tesla Investors Sue Musk, Say His ‘Unchecked’ Tweets Hurting Company

The crackdown on fake accounts comes a day after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg published a memo about the company becoming a “privacy-focused social network” like WhatsApp.

Admitting that people want private, encrypted services, Zuckerberg said Facebook will become like the mobile messaging platform which is more secure with end-to-end encryption. (IANS)

Next Story

Social Networking Giant Facebook Blames Apple iOS for Bezos’ Phone Hacking

WhatsApp provides end-to-end encryption by default, which means only the sender and recipient can view the messages

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Social Media, Facebook, Authenticity, Posts
The social media application, Facebook is displayed on Apple's App Store, July 30, 2019. VOA

Facebook has blamed Apple’s operating system for the hacking of Amazon Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos’ phone, saying WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption is unhackable.

Investigators believe that Bezos’s iPhone was compromised after he received a 4.4MB video file containing malware via WhatsApp – in the same way when phones of 1,400 select journalists and human rights activists were broken into by Pegasus software from Israel-based NSO Group last year.

In an interview to the BBC last week, Facebook’s Vice President of Global Affairs and Communications, Nick Clegg, said it wasn’t WhatsApp’s fault because end-to-end encryption is unhackable and blamed Apple’s operating system for Bezos’ episode.

“It sounds like something on the, you know, what they call the operate, operated on the phone itself. It can’t have been anything on the, when the message was sent, in transit, because that’s end-to-end encrypted on WhatsApp,” Clegg told the show host.

Clegg compared the hack to opening a malicious email, saying that “it only comes to life when you open it”.

According to a report from FTI Consulting, a firm that has investigated Bezos’ phone, after that the video file was received, Bezos’ phone started sending unusually large amounts of outbound data, including his intimate messages with his girlfriend Lauren Sanchez.

Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and owner of Blue Origin. (Wikimedia commons)

According to Clegg, “something” must have affected the phone’s operating system.

“As sure as you can be that the technology of end-to-end encryption cannot, other than unless you have handset, or you have the message at either end, cannot be hacked into,” he was quoted as saying.

Apple was yet to comment on Facebook’s statement.

The NSO Group has denied it was part of Bezos’ hacking.

Also Read: Here Are Some Life Lessons That We Can Learn From Freedom Fighters this Republic Day

WhatsApp provides end-to-end encryption by default, which means only the sender and recipient can view the messages. But the piece of NSO Group software exploited WhatsApp’s video calling system by installing the spyware via missed calls to snoop on the selected users.

According to leading tech policy and media consultant Prasanto K. Roy, end-to-end encrypted apps (E2EE) do provide security, and messages or calls cannot be intercepted and decrypted en route without enormous computing resources.

“But once anyone can get to your handset, whether a human or a piece of software, the encryption doesn’t matter anymore. Because on your handset, it’s all decrypted,” Roy told IANS recently. (IANS)