Report: Left-Leaning Policy Group Appears To Have Flooded Net Neutrality Forum With 100,000+ Fake Comments
More than 100,000 comments supporting government regulation of the internet appear to have been automatically submitted by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a left-leaning nonprofit, according to a forensic analysis published Wednesday.
The responses likely did not come organically from real people, which the Federal Communications Commissions (FCC) forum for public comment on net neutrality is intended to be for, according to The National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC). Rather, the NLPC claims the comments seem to be artificially submitted by the EFF since language used is highly similar to EFFs submission platform and both the email addresses and the physical addresses of the listed people are fake, or dont exist.
The full breadth of the fake comments at this point is not known. But based on an initial forensic analysis, we believe it is massive, NLPC President Peter Flaherty said. Indeed, based on our initial read, almost one fifth (465,322) of all pro-net neutrality comments submitted into the docket appear to have come from email addresses that have made multiple submissions, sometimes with duplicates in the thousands. At least 100,000 more comments from an Electronic Frontier Foundation Net Neutrality comment campaign appear to have been generated using both fake email and fake physical addresses and perhaps even fake names.
The NLPC investigated some of the email extensions and discovered that they were listed and offered on a free disposable email address service called Fake Mail Generator.
The organization also suspected the potentially feigned support for net neutrality by browsing through 100,148 comments and deciphering that they all contained a suspiciously large portion of language that was used in the EFFs submission platform. The EFF, though, offers rotating variables meaning there are options for certain words to make the comments look different.
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