ISIS supporters exploit novel social media to broadcast their messages, pass information and gain support.
Information has been provided to SecurityMiddleEast.Com of ISIS supporters increasing use of new and novel social media outlets to broadcast and discuss their extremist views and propaganda.
The latest applications we have been informed of are the applications Mixlr and Paltalk.
MixIr is described in the Apple App Store as a simple way to share live audio online. It states you can “broadcast using any source and invite people to listen and chat in real-time”. It has features that include the ability to Broadcast live using any audio source, chat and engage with listeners in real-time, and Invite friends to listen by sharing the live stream on social networks. It is available online and for smart phones, and users can log on from their Facebook or Twitter accounts.
Paltalk is a New York based video group chat service that enables users to communicate via video, internet chat and voice. It offers chat rooms and the ability for users to create their own public virtual chat room.
Supporters of ISIS have created at least 2 accounts on MixIr that we have been informed of, with one account, a paid for account, broadcasting several times a day at times and since it was set up at the end of October 2014 it has been listened to over 44,500 times. It has 665 followers who can interact with each other during broadcasts and whilst many comments are mundane (complaining about sound quality) a significant number espouse extremist views and updates from ISIS and ISIS supporters around the world.
A second account only has 134 followers but we believe that this is a “standby” account ready to step up should the main account be taken down. The associated twitter pages have almost 2400 followers and clearly these are ISIS members and supporters from across the globe.
In Paltalk, it is reported the extremist and pro-ISIS cleric Abdullah al-Faisal has used it to broadcast his extreme views and try to garner support.
ISIS and ISIS supporters are constantly trying to use alternative social media channels to broadcast their extremist views and propaganda to supporters worldwide. As the social media companies discover these channels they tend to be shut down, but shortly after new channels appear.
The war against ISIS in the social media battlefield is intense and an indicator of their very sophisticated ability to reach a global audience with ease.
Report produced in conjunction with Maha Hamdan, Global Risk Awareness Director of MENA Research & Analysis.