In what should have been a straightforward demonstration of how to tell if an account is genuine, Twitter went in the opposite direction, demonstrating that it may not be worthy of your trust. A data scientist announced that fake Twitter accounts bearing the blue checkmark indicating that they have been verified had been discovered. Meanwhile, those who are still struggling to get the “Verified Tick” on their Profiles – We go away! 😭
Discovery of Twitter Fake Accounts
How else would a data scientist communicate his Twitter discovery to the rest of the world? Naturally, via a tweet!
“Meet ‘ @aykacmis, @degismece, @onlamislar, @aykacti, @kayitlii, and #conmedim, a sextet of blue-check verified Twitter accounts created on June 16, 2021,” wrote the data scientist, who goes by the Twitter handle “Conspirador Norteño.” “None have yet tweeted, and all have a combined following of approximately 1000. (and mostly the “same” followers).” That’s sus isn’t it? 🧐
Additionally, the tweet included screencaps of the profiles of the six bogus accounts.
Not only do those approximately 1000 followers appear on all six of the strangely verified Twitter accounts, but the followers’ accounts appear to be fakely created as well. While the six verified accounts appeared to have been created on June 16, the fake followers accounts appeared to have been created on June 19 and June 20.
Certain Twitter accounts receive a blue checkmark to indicate they have been verified. Users will be able to verify that these are legitimate accounts, as only those who many strangers would seek out on the platform – such as entertainers, politicians, journalists, and activists – are supposed to receive that distinguished status. Twitter only recently reintroduced verifications in May.
The six bogus accounts were discovered by the data scientist while conducting a search for “patterns” within recently verified accounts. Anybody can do this by searching for the @verified account and seeing which accounts it has followed.
Additionally, the whistleblower stated that the bogus Twitter accounts appear to be part of a botnet that utilises an AI image generator to generate profile pictures.
“Only a small percentage of the accounts in this network tweet. The vast majority of tweets are spam in Korean sent via the automation service dlvr(dot)it promoting a website,” the data scientist explained.
What Twitter Said About The Fake Accounts?
Twitter responded to the data scientist’s announcement by admitting the verification of the fake accounts. “We approved the verification requests for a small number of inauthentic (fake) accounts by mistake,” a Twitter spokesperson said. 🙄
Meanwhile me (in my mind) – Pls give me the Verified Tick by mistake. I need that! 😺
“In accordance with our platform manipulation and spam policy, we have now permanently suspended the accounts in question and removed their verified badge.” Since the botnet’s discovery, the majority of it has been suspended.
However, Twitter never explained why the accounts received the blue checkmark indicating they had been verified.