I checked out the #BanglaSpring tag on Twitter yesterday. First impression was yet another social media engineering event using realistic looking but fake accounts.
A lot of the information being posted is hard to verify –
I just saw a Facebook post about Bangladesh in Arabic from a page supposedly created to support Syria. Really? With everything happening in Syria right now that page admin thought this was the time to focus on Bangladesh? The post showed 165 likes and 100 shares in one hour. A post on the same page about a distress call from Syria had just 3 shares and 38 likes after 2 hours.
Also, I saw Facebook posts and tweets exposing a fake “anon” #OpBangladesh campaign:
#OpBangladesh featured on this site after the April clothing factory fire. The original incarnation of this site was abused by certain individuals for purposes of infiltration and manipulation back in 2009 with #IranElection. It has since been upgraded and old links no longer work.
Finally, here is a call from Anonymous Bangladesh via Anon Arts International
Attention Call from Anonymous Bangladesh***********************************
We want to tell you that and be sure about that. We Anonymous Bangladesh is not associated with Updates regarding #OpBangladesh by #Anonymous. Not only Anonymous Bangladesh, Team Anonymous also is not associated with any hacktivism related with this operation.
Stay sharp. Don’t believe in any spam reports.
Taken together, these facts clinch it for me: way too much mango-flavored kool-aid.
If there are any real #BanglaSpring activists they are going to have to work real hard to get support and attention from anyone in the “activist diaspora” who is now wary because of these operations. They also need to wise up and watch out for astroturfing.
To be honest I was expecting the next event to be in the Caucasus/former Soviet region because I saw signs of old bots being reactivated. There’s still time for that to kick off!