Ukraine shuts down five bot farms spreading panic and misinformation among its citizens

midian182

Posts: 7,786   +80
Staff member
In brief: The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has announced that since Russia invaded the country, it has identified and shut down five bot farms operating 100,000 social media accounts spreading fake news related to the invasion.

The SBU wrote in a release that the farms, located in regions that included Kharkiv, Cherkasy, Ternopil, and Zakarpattia, were used for "large-scale information sabotage," spreading distorted news and propaganda about a full-scale Russian invasion. The ultimate goal was to destabilize the socio-political situation in different areas while instilling panic among Ukraine's population.

Among the equipment seized at the different bot farms were over 100 GSM gateway devices, almost 10,000 SIM cards, laptops, and other computer equipment containing evidence of illegal actions. Some of the SBU's photos show they also collected phones, USB drives, weapons, and ammunition.

The SBU writes that agents operating the farms were doing so on the instruction of Russian special services. The agency said it had initiated criminal proceedings under article 110 (encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. Despite comprehensive measures being underway to bring those involved to justice, there is no mention in the statement of any arrests being made.

Russia has long been the source of online threats and misinformation campaigns, which have skyrocketed since it invaded its neighbor. Amid the numerous phishing incidents and cyberattacks being carried out, Kaspersky, long thought to have ties to the Russian government, was placed on the US national security blacklist. We've also seen President Biden warn American companies to bolster their online defenses, the Cyclops Blink botnet, and a Russian court find Facebook and Instagram guilty of extremist activity.

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kiwigraeme

Posts: 988   +739
I just simply amazed how well troll farms work on a certain percentage of the population . Yeah I can understand say amplifying Biden is getting old and not of agile mind . Or even Democrats are going to take your guns the very next day- when it's just hot air BS ( oh they want to take take guns from mentally ill people ) .
But people are buying into the most outlandish BS - it's splitting families etc . There are people in a America who live in towns where school shootings happened - and they believe they were false flags , staged actors etc .
Whether you believe the earth is flat ( pls explain polar winters , and midnight suns ) or the moon landings were fake - does really matter? . But look at Covid 19 - thinking its mostly a scam - yet happy to take the most outlandish cures - some rando on the internet is more relevant than a family member who is a medical or scientist in the field .
Least the flat earthers and moon landing people will engage in open debate .
With the "it's a lie the world is getting warmer"( they mostly stopped this narrative - never admitted they were wrong - probably never admit they even said this for a decade non-stop ) -now its not manmade and warming is super good - they drop the same disproven info week after week - and can not back it up.
Look at Ukraine - the whole they are Nazis and killed 20 000 random people narrative - no one can back it up - yet they strongly believe( yes from 2014 there is conflict between Ukraine & Russian back separatists in Donbas ) - they ignore freedom of press in Russia . That Russian are fed propaganda from birth they are superior , that western people are degenerates , immoral, weak , sexually confused etc - that all of the Eastern Bloc rightfully belongs to Russia - that it's normal and right for powerful corrupt people to exploit those below them . I haven't asked Russians directly but I remember when I was in Zaire ( now Republic of Congo ) some of them were proud their dictator was exploiting them - it was his right .
Thankfully all this corruption , stealing from the State ( was normal and necessary in USSR times as your official salary was a joke ) - is helping Ukraine most of the tanks and other weapons in storage are dead/useless - parts taken and stolen , fluids removed and drank .
For Ukraine to join the E.U it will need to reduce corruption , increase democracy , pass human rights laws etc .
The whole NATO narrative is BS - Russia is pulling troops away from NATO borders to fight in Ukraine - why ? -as they know NATO has never had intentions to invade Russia - no matter what they tell their people.
This propaganda runs deep it will take 100 years to shake out - some older Germans still believed Germany was the good guy in WW2 and they were only defending themselves . Some Americans still believe controlling Black Americans is good for them.
Its easy to make fun of say African development . But travel to Eastern European countries and talk about say Albanians ( apparently no good Albanians in most of surrounding countries according to some ) - talk about Gitano/gypsies - again according to some - there are no good ones . That Serbian Offensive - made absolute no sense to me as a Kiwi.
My take is you will get no future resolution if you argue the past ( your Grandparents did this & that - or great great grandparents )
 

Tantor

Posts: 296   +536
LOL - Beautiful example of a government shutting down freedom of speech. It happens in time of war. There's far more to this issue.

The Ukrainian government is a Vassal State of the US. It was put in power in 2014 via a CIA color revolution. At that time, the Ukrainian nation had an elected president, Yanukovich. During the revolution, a death squad tried to assassinate him and he barely made it out alive.

Obama immediately recognized the new revolutionary government. That recognition was 100% illegal since Yanukovich was still the legitimate president. Yanukovich was very popular among the predominantly Russian ethnics of Eastern Ukraine. They refused to recognize the new, CIA backed regime. The Ukrainian government... with the blessings of the US ... started a lengthy and brutal program of repression against the ethnic Russian population. They banned the Russian language. They started a low-grade war in the East, eventually killing over 14,000 Russian ethnics. Watch Oliver Stone's documentary, "Ukraine on Fire".

US actions over the last 30 years are egregious.

- The US invaded Iraq TWICE. Both times caused horrendous casualties. Estimates run in the millions of dead Iraqis. The US claimed Iraq had WMDs, but none were ever found. During the first war, the US systematically bombed out most of Iraq's infrastructure including all the bridges, water facilities, power plants and more. The US maintained draconian sanctions and a no-fly zone over Iraq for seven years in the 1990's. The UN reported that over 500,000 Iraqi children died as a direct result of Madeline Albright's actions.
- The US invaded and occupied Afghanistan for 20 years, again causing horrendous casualties.
- The US bombed Serbia for 78 straight days, even bringing in B-52s to perform carpet bombing. Then the US forced Serbia to give up Kosovo, upon which the US built a gigantic base called Camp Bondsteel.
- The US and Nato bombed Libya for weeks, and were instrumental in the hideous death of Moamar Kadaffi.
- The US illegally invaded Syria and occupied their oil fields. The Syrian government has repeatedly told the US to leave, but the US refuses. I have read that the US is pumping and selling Syrian oil.

It's quite likely that Biden's hasty pullout from Afghanistan was meant to minimize Russian anti-US accusations in preparation for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Just think if the US still occupied Afghanistan. Russia would have a field day with their propaganda.

Ukraine should definitely be free and independent of Russia. But that means free of US influence too.
 

kiwigraeme

Posts: 988   +739
Mostly propoganda and what aboutism
2 Million Afghanis dead - yes 2 million - look at Hospitals , schools in Syria , look at Grozny . Russian is an indiscriminate killing machine .
Why don't you Tantor send your sons and daughter to fight the Ukrainian Nazis - maybe you should join the Wagner group - who specialise in war crimes and Nazi symbology .

I have strongly criticised American imperialism . When I arrived in The USA as a tourist early 1988 - I was amazed to hear schoolgrounds every morning swearing allegiance to the flag indoctrination

"instrumental in the hideous death of Moamar Kadaffi." - oh diddums - he was not a nice person - trained terrorist and killed many of his own people . -But Russian love "strong" leaders like Assad the killer - Hitler when it suited them

One thing for USA and British - they may bomb infrastructure ( unlike Russian targets - women and children ) - yet they stayed often to help rebuild it newer and better .
The whole Donbas thing happen from 2014 solely due to Russian interference - Show me proof of this 20000 - hell Russian propaganda changes the amount at times - sometimes 14000 , sometimes 20 000.
Russia has killed a lot of "Russians" in the Donbas region in the last month. Most Russian Ukrainians in the East hate Putin and Russia now more than ever .
Russia has lost - it's economy , army is a joke .
Yes the WMD were never real - The Taliban did not fly planes into the twin towers . The WMD were a lie by Saddam Hussein to protect from Iranian invasion ( he was vulnerable as USA etc had decimated their Army /Airforce )
USA stuffed up post Iraq big time - Should of let the British be in charge - USA corruption of it's private companies/contactors who paid off Senators etc . There was a least 1 year of grace -to set good groundwork - and they FUed .
None of the Russian Friend countries really like Russia - You think most of the Stans like Russia - nope - Belarus - nope . Now they might like Russian people and have great Russian Friends. Georgia Nope - why would a proud Georgian want a Russian puppet govt to exploit them and hold them back .
Russia is finished - even Russian commentators are saying this on State TV if they can not win in Ukraine .
Anyway put out real sources for 20 000 deaths from ethic cleansing- or stop posting this known lie . You don't believe it - nor do I
 

flipp3r

Posts: 28   +7
What's the advantage of setting these "Bot Farms" in the Ukraine? Aren't they having internet & power issues?
Is it an ip address location thing? Seems odd to me...
 

eforce

Posts: 901   +1,275
What's the advantage of setting these "Bot Farms" in the Ukraine? Aren't they having internet & power issues?
Is it an ip address location thing? Seems odd to me...

They aren't really bot farms just anyone who has spoken against the narrative.
 

kiwigraeme

Posts: 988   +739
What's the advantage of setting these "Bot Farms" in the Ukraine? Aren't they having internet & power issues?
Is it an ip address location thing? Seems odd to me...
Probably just business. Some of the big hacker groups are spread across the Eastern Bloc . Have seen stories about one group having Ukrainian and Russian Members - they all are some what beholden to FSB etc for existing ( mainly at the leaders in the group - for people lower down it may just be a job - they sometimes complain if not paid or expenses met .Ransomware is a business - Russian has it's elite state hackers Cosy Bear or whatever they are called etc.
Russia is very corrupt - gangs need to pay off etc .
Unfortunately for Russia the offense is better than defense - for it's businesses.
Apparently the Civil Airlines Dept server hacked and deleted - money for infrastructure stolen long ago.
There are lots of troll farms in the west - they probably sell to anyone .
Russia Dis-information sometimes comes a full circle . Feeding Americans anti-vax stuff has come back to haunt Russia.
Troll farms apparently quite an Art - throw lots of things out and see what sticks and then amplify that .
Trump early in his campaign threw out lots of stuff . Cambridge Analytica saw what what was working. For simple folk 3 word messages work best .
"Lock her up" - "Build the Wall" "Drain the Swamp" "Make America Great Again ( 4 word s or 3 with "again"said silently ) - for even dumber 2 words "America First" - his audience is low educational and/or very naïve - none of these things happened or were achieved - the Swamp got worse with more anti-democratic corruption .

Going forward it is going to be much harder for Russia to nterfere in say French , American elections - no one wants to tolerate their hatred and pettiness due to their inferiority complexes - Happy successful , educated people more immune to troll farms - they don't need a narrative to blame for dropping out of college, not getting and holding jobs .
 

Gameredic

Posts: 22   +9
LOL - Beautiful example of a government shutting down freedom of speech. It happens in time of war. There's far more to this issue.

The Ukrainian government is a Vassal State of the US. It was put in power in 2014 via a CIA color revolution. At that time, the Ukrainian nation had an elected president, Yanukovich. During the revolution, a death squad tried to assassinate him and he barely made it out alive.

Obama immediately recognized the new revolutionary government. That recognition was 100% illegal since Yanukovich was still the legitimate president. Yanukovich was very popular among the predominantly Russian ethnics of Eastern Ukraine. They refused to recognize the new, CIA backed regime. The Ukrainian government... with the blessings of the US ... started a lengthy and brutal program of repression against the ethnic Russian population. They banned the Russian language. They started a low-grade war in the East, eventually killing over 14,000 Russian ethnics. Watch Oliver Stone's documentary, "Ukraine on Fire".

US actions over the last 30 years are egregious.

- The US invaded Iraq TWICE. Both times caused horrendous casualties. Estimates run in the millions of dead Iraqis. The US claimed Iraq had WMDs, but none were ever found. During the first war, the US systematically bombed out most of Iraq's infrastructure including all the bridges, water facilities, power plants and more. The US maintained draconian sanctions and a no-fly zone over Iraq for seven years in the 1990's. The UN reported that over 500,000 Iraqi children died as a direct result of Madeline Albright's actions.
- The US invaded and occupied Afghanistan for 20 years, again causing horrendous casualties.
- The US bombed Serbia for 78 straight days, even bringing in B-52s to perform carpet bombing. Then the US forced Serbia to give up Kosovo, upon which the US built a gigantic base called Camp Bondsteel.
- The US and Nato bombed Libya for weeks, and were instrumental in the hideous death of Moamar Kadaffi.
- The US illegally invaded Syria and occupied their oil fields. The Syrian government has repeatedly told the US to leave, but the US refuses. I have read that the US is pumping and selling Syrian oil.

It's quite likely that Biden's hasty pullout from Afghanistan was meant to minimize Russian anti-US accusations in preparation for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Just think if the US still occupied Afghanistan. Russia would have a field day with their propaganda.

Ukraine should definitely be free and independent of Russia. But that means free of US influence too.
Bruh, that's not how the world works.
Lesser of two evils is the USA. So have Ukraine be a vassal state of the USA>
 

Puiu

Posts: 5,477   +4,400
TechSpot Elite
LOL - Beautiful example of a government shutting down freedom of speech. It happens in time of war. There's far more to this issue.

The Ukrainian government is a Vassal State of the US. It was put in power in 2014 via a CIA color revolution. At that time, the Ukrainian nation had an elected president, Yanukovich. During the revolution, a death squad tried to assassinate him and he barely made it out alive.

Obama immediately recognized the new revolutionary government. That recognition was 100% illegal since Yanukovich was still the legitimate president. Yanukovich was very popular among the predominantly Russian ethnics of Eastern Ukraine. They refused to recognize the new, CIA backed regime. The Ukrainian government... with the blessings of the US ... started a lengthy and brutal program of repression against the ethnic Russian population. They banned the Russian language. They started a low-grade war in the East, eventually killing over 14,000 Russian ethnics. Watch Oliver Stone's documentary, "Ukraine on Fire".

US actions over the last 30 years are egregious.

- The US invaded Iraq TWICE. Both times caused horrendous casualties. Estimates run in the millions of dead Iraqis. The US claimed Iraq had WMDs, but none were ever found. During the first war, the US systematically bombed out most of Iraq's infrastructure including all the bridges, water facilities, power plants and more. The US maintained draconian sanctions and a no-fly zone over Iraq for seven years in the 1990's. The UN reported that over 500,000 Iraqi children died as a direct result of Madeline Albright's actions.
- The US invaded and occupied Afghanistan for 20 years, again causing horrendous casualties.
- The US bombed Serbia for 78 straight days, even bringing in B-52s to perform carpet bombing. Then the US forced Serbia to give up Kosovo, upon which the US built a gigantic base called Camp Bondsteel.
- The US and Nato bombed Libya for weeks, and were instrumental in the hideous death of Moamar Kadaffi.
- The US illegally invaded Syria and occupied their oil fields. The Syrian government has repeatedly told the US to leave, but the US refuses. I have read that the US is pumping and selling Syrian oil.

It's quite likely that Biden's hasty pullout from Afghanistan was meant to minimize Russian anti-US accusations in preparation for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Just think if the US still occupied Afghanistan. Russia would have a field day with their propaganda.

Ukraine should definitely be free and independent of Russia. But that means free of US influence too.
Shutting down troll farms is now "censorship"? O_o

Excuse me?
 

Aaron Fox

Posts: 153   +90
For simple folk 3 word messages work best .
"Lock her up" - "Build the Wall" "Drain the Swamp" "Make America Great Again ( 4 word s or 3 with "again"said silently ) - for even dumber 2 words "America First" - his audience is low educational and/or very naïve
Meanwhile, count the number of times Al Gore said 'lock box' in the first debate against W.
Shutting down troll farms is now "censorship"?
Not, now. Always.

Censorship comes in many forms. How easy it is to justify it doesn't change that. The thinnest edge of censorship is for material generated by AI (including simple scripts). It's still censorship, though because the communication was set in motion by one or more people to influence one or more people.
 

kiwigraeme

Posts: 988   +739
What do Russians consider Nazism - in there context all the former countries in the Soviet Bloc who which to assert their nature right to be a sovereign nation.
Russian Propaganda believes they are not a racists society - as they are all Russians - Georgians, Estonias etc can not assert their identity - they must be Russia - and as George Orwell said not all Russians are created equal - that's why Russians have lots of derogatory names for Ukrainians and other people . In general we are also Nazis as we don't accept Russians as the Master Race .
Here is an article on the rise of Neo-Nazis under Putin

As for closing down troll farms being censorship , suppose like closing spam bots also being censorship.

All independent media in Russia has now been shut down .
I really want to know what people like Tantor want for Russia - to be feared , to show that the strong should exploit the weak ?
Tantor where do you hope Russia to be in 50 years ?

Can you even be able to criticise Putin? .
You ask some people to criticise say Trump - they will say - I wish he didn't work so hard , or not take reward and be so kind - foregoing his salary .
That he wasn't so kind and embracing .
I have seen Trump supporters say all those things

I can criticise NZ - I can criticise any Prime Minister no matter the party .

There is a thing called Russian bargaining - they send lackeys who say they don't have power to move position - so you have to move ,

When you get people discussing issues - let's say a court case - and they are adamant the person is innocent - yet they never once entertain any argue to their guilt - they won't even say that doesn't look good , or that points to guilt . Same as the Russian Bargaining - tell them they are not discussing in good faith .

Eg Tantor says all this bad things other countries allegedly do - but never admits to any Russian wrong doing . Then you know they are arguing from bad faith .
Most Americans here say yeah we have done some shameful stuff - we should get better or so what ?
Russian Propaganda is they do no wrong . They are bringing peace and happiness to Ukraine - well the 18 & 19 year old Russia lads dying in large numbers - don't think so - they don't really know why they should be there dying for old men .
Russia population is declining - the lost of young people in WW2 and under Stalin hurt Russia bad - but Putin wants an empire - and 50 000 young Russians can die for all he cares - 16000 dead Russans already - lots more injured - they won't be heroes or admired they will be hated as they brought defeat to Russia ( no you the people and Putin did ) .

Why should they die Tantor ? - your lies about 20000 dead . Russians think Estonia is full of Nazis as well - all the ones with non Puppet govts are full of Nazis for young men to die for .

Do you really want to see a WW1 like war in Donbas going on your years - Young Russians dying in bunkers - firing artillery day and night .

Sign up yourself or your kids f you believe so strongly

In the last Ukraine elections - Far Right party 2% - yes 2% of vote - that is less than many western countries .
 

emmzo

Posts: 589   +721
LOL - Beautiful example of a government shutting down freedom of speech. It happens in time of war. There's far more to this issue.

The Ukrainian government is a Vassal State of the US. It was put in power in 2014 via a CIA color revolution. At that time, the Ukrainian nation had an elected president, Yanukovich. During the revolution, a death squad tried to assassinate him and he barely made it out alive.

Obama immediately recognized the new revolutionary government. That recognition was 100% illegal since Yanukovich was still the legitimate president. Yanukovich was very popular among the predominantly Russian ethnics of Eastern Ukraine. They refused to recognize the new, CIA backed regime. The Ukrainian government... with the blessings of the US ... started a lengthy and brutal program of repression against the ethnic Russian population. They banned the Russian language. They started a low-grade war in the East, eventually killing over 14,000 Russian ethnics. Watch Oliver Stone's documentary, "Ukraine on Fire".

US actions over the last 30 years are egregious.

- The US invaded Iraq TWICE. Both times caused horrendous casualties. Estimates run in the millions of dead Iraqis. The US claimed Iraq had WMDs, but none were ever found. During the first war, the US systematically bombed out most of Iraq's infrastructure including all the bridges, water facilities, power plants and more. The US maintained draconian sanctions and a no-fly zone over Iraq for seven years in the 1990's. The UN reported that over 500,000 Iraqi children died as a direct result of Madeline Albright's actions.
- The US invaded and occupied Afghanistan for 20 years, again causing horrendous casualties.
- The US bombed Serbia for 78 straight days, even bringing in B-52s to perform carpet bombing. Then the US forced Serbia to give up Kosovo, upon which the US built a gigantic base called Camp Bondsteel.
- The US and Nato bombed Libya for weeks, and were instrumental in the hideous death of Moamar Kadaffi.
- The US illegally invaded Syria and occupied their oil fields. The Syrian government has repeatedly told the US to leave, but the US refuses. I have read that the US is pumping and selling Syrian oil.

It's quite likely that Biden's hasty pullout from Afghanistan was meant to minimize Russian anti-US accusations in preparation for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Just think if the US still occupied Afghanistan. Russia would have a field day with their propaganda.

Ukraine should definitely be free and independent of Russia. But that means free of US influence too.
You forget that about 80% of Kharkiv and Mariupol are ethnic russians. They are getting obliterated now and you still think there's an equal sign between US deposing a dictator in Irak, putting a stop to genocides in Serbia, fighting state terrorism in Syria and Afghanistan and Putin invading a free democratic country and killing indiscriminately whatever crosses his way, in the case of eastern Ukraine, mostly his own people.
Edit: Sry, I forgot this guy copy/pastes official Russian propaganda.
 
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kiwigraeme

Posts: 988   +739
You forget that about 80% of Kharkiv and Mariupol are ethnic russians. They are getting obliterated now and you still think there's an equal sign between US deposing a dictator in Irak, putting a stop to genocides in Serbia, fighting state terrorism in Syria and Afghanistan and Putin invading a free democratic country and killing indiscriminately whatever crosses his way, in the case of eastern Ukraine, mostly his own people.
Edit: Sry, I forgot this guy copy/pastes official Russian propaganda.
Here is Mariupol deNazified supported by 85% of Russians and their propoganda exponents
https://www.reddit.com/r/Damnthatsinteresting/comments/ts7yx4