Twitter has suspended 125,000 accounts connected to the Islamic State over the past six months, the company said Friday.
It was the first time Twitter shared specifics on the number of accounts it has deleted.
Twitter has been heavily criticized for not more effectively policing the presence of the extremist group. Pressure has heated up from the Obama administration and presidential candidates in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris and in San Bernardino County.
The Islamic State — also known as ISIL or ISIS — use popular Internet services such as Twitter and Facebook to spread propaganda and to attract and train new recruits. The extremist group has used Twitter to celebrate terrorist attacks and publicize executions.
It has been preparing sympathizers for this type of event for awhile, said Veryan Khan, editorial director at the Terrorism Research and Analysis Consortium, a private firm that collects information on terrorism.
“’How to’ videos have been circulating over this month on how to create dozens of back up accounts easily including creating false working phone numbers for those using Tor. I think the bounce back for the Islamic State will be fairly effortless,” she said.
Twitter says it does not permit tweets that promote terrorism or make violent threats. It relies on users to alert the company about violations to its policies.
Read more: USA Today
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