Facebook has found itself at the center of many controversies, whether it be censorship of conservatives or violation of privacy rights to name a few. A whistleblower has come forward to reveal what may be the worst act yet. The Associated Press reports that while Facebook:
Likes to say that its automated systems remove the vast majority of prohibited content glorifying the Islamic State group and al-Qaida before it’s reported. But a whistleblower’s complaint shows that Facebook itself has inadvertently provided the two extremist groups with a networking and recruitment took by producing dozens of pages in their names.
This report comes only four months since The Associated Press “detailed how pages that Facebook auto-generates for businesses are aiding Middle East extremists and white supremacists in the United States.”
Clearly no improvements have been made. Updated information comes from a complaint to the Securities and Exchange Commission that the National Whistleblower Center plans to file this week.
The filed complaint detailed:
200 auto-generated pages – some for business, others for schools or other categories – that directly reference the Islamic State group and dozens more representing al-Qaida and other known groups. One page listed as a ‘political ideology’ is titled ‘I love Islamic State. It features an IS logo inside the outlines of Facebook’s famous thumbs-up icon.
How does the auto-generated mess work? According to the Associated Press, “Facebook has a number of functions that auto-generate pages from content posted by users.” One of the functions that is meant to help businesses and business networking is scrutinized in the FEC complaint: “It scrapes employment information from users’ pages to create pages for businesses.” However, “In this case, it may be helping the extremist groups because it allows users to like the pages, potentially providing a list of sympathizers for recruiters.”
One specific auto-generated page uncovered was for the September 11th hijacker Mohammed Atta. The page displayed his photograph and lists his work as “Al Qaidah” and education as “University Master Bin Laden” and “School Terrorist Afghanistan.”
Continue Reading: Associated Press