Tuesday, January 26, 01:24
Home security Australia Fires: Twitter bots and trolls promote conspiracy theories

Australia Fires: Twitter bots and trolls promote conspiracy theories


While Australia is still battling the deadly fires that have destroyed much of the country, one campaign spreading false news has begun on the causes.

As Dr Timothy Graham, from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) reports, tweets bearing hashtags like #ArsonEmergency, they appear to come from bot and troll accounts.

As he told ZDNet, tweets focused on the denial of climate change, and the fact that environmentalists are responsible for the fires, while also saying that they are incendiary attacks".

Those last two are conspiracy theories, he said.

Ecologists have never prevented fires in areas prone to fires. In fact they support it.

And while some fires are actually caused by arson, there is no evidence that this is the case.

Graham collected a sample of tweets from January 1st to January 6th, using one tool based on Python. What he discovered was a large number of suspicious accounts muzzle.

Graham said the analysis is based on just 315 accounts using the #ArsonEmergency hashtag, compared to 1106 using #BushfireAustralia and 7674 using #AustraliaFire.

In general, Graham's main concern is that this whole episode will be "a little annoying" for Australia, because of what he says is "unprecedented" misinformation.

The government warns of false donations

As is often the case in times of crisis, there are those who try to take advantage of the opportunity to their advantage.

According to government, some scammers pretend to be people affected by fires and are seeking financial help.

"Scammers pick up phones, send instant messages and create fakes websites "and social media pages to raise donations," Scamwatch warned on Monday.

"Do not donate through donation pages to platforms that do not check the legality of the donor collector or that do not guarantee that your money will be refunded if the site is found to be malicious," they wrote.


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Absent Mia
Absent Miahttps://www.secnews.gr
Being your self, in a world that constantly tries to change you, is your greatest achievement



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