Fake Twitter Accounts Declare Pre-Mature Victory for Joe Biden
Twitter was quick to suspend the accounts which mimicked the account name and logos of the Associated Press and CNN.
As the final result of the United States Presidential elections inches closer, several Twitter accounts on Wednesday, 5 November, posed as US news organisations to falsely and prematurely declare election victories for Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
According to a report by The Wall Street Journal, it appeared to be a coordinated campaign to inject disinformation into the online conversation about the presidential contest.
The report further added that Twitter was quick to suspend the accounts which mimicked the account name and logos of the Associated Press and CNN.
Most of these accounts, which were identified by The Wall Street Journal, sought to prematurely announce victory for Biden, but in at least one instance, declared that President Trump had won re-election.
On Wednesday afternoon, the outlet identified three accounts mimicking the AP which declared in identical language that Joe Biden had won the state of Michigan, a few hours before AP made real the call.
Another account made a similar claim for Georgia. These tweets were subsequently boosted by journalists and other verified handles.
The report stated that roughly a dozen accounts were reviewed by the Journal and it was found that they used the same photos and similar profile names and in some cases, tweeted information in rapid succession, indicating the activity was coordinated across accounts.
“We’re in the last leg of the race here, but it’s still a very volatile environment, especially given the disagreements over the outcome,” the Journal quoted John Hultquist, an intelligence analyst as saying.
After several tweets claimed a premature victory for Biden in Michigan, federal officials reiterated earlier calls for voters to be patient and not be duped by accounts seeking to amplify disinformation about the election.
While it is still not known that who was behind this coordinated campaign, the Journal stated that a review of earlier tweets from one of the accounts showed some tweets that were written in Arabic, that made references to praising Allah.
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