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Iran: Massive Production of False News and News Clips

By Arash Motamed, Rooz Online

The Confidential Deputy of State-Run Radio-TV

IRIB buildingThe media deputy of Iran's state-run radio and television network (IRIB) or the logistic branch of the cyber division has recently boosted its activities. The cyber division was launched about nine months ago and it is tasked with disrupting the media world through the production and distribution of fake news and news video clips.

This division is housed in a 5 story building and comprises of 20 units that include 4 cyber networks, an administrative building and a number of news media and services. It operates with a budget of 100 billion Toman (about $100 million) and it is lead by a person close to the leader of the Islamic republic.

The division also has 3 internet networks called, "Ma" (We), "Shoma" (You) and "Paydari" (Resistance) which in its special section is active filtering out Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and engaging Balatarin site users in superficial discussions (Balatarin is a community site like Facebook but with an emphasis on Iranian audiences).

While providing various services to 12,000 cleric students who maintain close ties with this division, the Paydari network is busy creating a new space with fictitious names and photos of fabricated women, boys and girls in Facebook. Till now, it has created over 25,000 fake accounts on Facebook and is backing up personal information and images from of other users for its subsequent manipulation.

Ma and Shoma networks upload targeted video clips and images on YouTube with the purpose of cleansing the video sharing website, as explained by the managers of the division.

Working under the powerful security blanket of the country's telecommunication, Iran's cyber army works to attack internet sites and destroy those that oppose the Islamic regime. A group of second rate hackers collaborate with the technical office of this division and one of whose tasks is to hack sites belonging to regime opponents.

The hacking of Balatarin that took place on February 14, 2011 by hackers from this division was done with the purpose of demonstrating the prowess of the group.

This group is made up of undisclosed individuals who have these acts on their list of accomplishments: broadcasting satellite video clips of Mehran Modiri, fabricating a photograph of Mir-Hossein Mousavi's daughter, presenting martyred Jhale as a Bisiji, exaggerating government-organized demonstrations of February 11, and belittling February 14 protesters.

... Payvand News - 02/22/11 ... --

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