Twitter suspends 1.2 million accounts for terrorism content

Aaron Brown
April 6, 2018

Twitter has put out its latest Transparency Report providing an update on how many terrorist accounts it has suspended on its platform - with a cumulative 1.2 million+ suspensions since August 2015.

"Between August 1, 2015 till December 31, 2017, Twitter has suspended 1,210,357 accounts for violations related to the promotion of terrorism".

Twitter just released its biannual Transparency Report to the public, which apparently showed an interesting statistic regarding the number of accounts they had already removed from the platform. That's down 8.4 percent from the previous reporting period and the second consecutive drop in the number of users who were suspended for that reason. According to Twitter, this drop is likely the product of work the company has done to make the social network "an undesirable place for those seeking to promote terrorism".

Only a quarter of reports of abusive behaviour submitted by government representatives were acted upon by Twitter, compared with 98% of reports relating to the "promotion of terrorism".

Nearly 75% of accounts were suspended before they sent their first tweet, according to the report, and 93% were discovered by tools that Twitter engineers had built.

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Between July and December 2017, roughly 270,000 accounts were permanently suspended.

The company's strategy to remove terrorism-related content from its platform has worked as evident in its claims that accounts created specifically to spread these types of content have rapidly declined over the past few years. Last September, Twitter reported that government-originating reports accounted for less than one percent of removals.

So political pressure remains especially high on that front.

The company said it will take action against accounts when their behavior violates "Twitter Rules" or it may be in response to a "valid and properly scoped" request from an "authorized entity in a given country". The US made 1,761 requests for information, the most of any government, and Turkey made the most legal demands, with 466 court orders and 3,828 requests of a different legal nature.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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