Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey, the 2.0 Web symbols. Some people consider them geniuses, for some others there are the enemies; Isis, which openly threatened Facebook and Twitter creators, belongs to the latter category. “Soon your name will disappear after we’ll have deleted your sites and, Allah willing, you’ll know that what we are saying is the truth” is the proclamation contained in a 25-minute video put online by the Daesh militiamen. The video basically turns the employees of the two companies into “targets”.
That move does not come as a surprise after the White House has hired the two giants of the Silicon Valley to unleash a veritable media war designed to show young Muslims Isis true. An answer to the communicative power of the new international terrorism, which relies exactly on the Web and on social networks to recruit new followers. Suffice it to remember what happened on the occasion of the Paris attacks of November 13, when hashtags such as #prayforparis – created to spread a message of solidarity and sympathy – were assaulted by the Caliphate’s supporters and followers to praise the attacks and threaten the West again. Or else, think of the more and more frequent use of videos and photos posted online, in which Isis-governed regions in Syria, Iraq, and Libya are described as a kind of earthly paradise ruled by the “Allah’s law”, as opposed to the “decadence” of the “crusaders’ immoral” society.
To strike its propaganda means to depower Daesh. That is why the recent Facebook and Twitter campaign, which ordered to shut down all the “suspect” account, was hard to swallow for the terrorists. An unbearable slap that pushed the jihadist establishment to study a countermove. This recent video called “Flames of the Supporters” was published by the hacker group “Sons of the Caliphate Army” and points its finger exactly against the founders of the two most popular social networks in the world. “To Mark and Jack, founders of Twitter and Facebook, and to their Crusader government – the video starts off -. You announce daily that you suspended many of our accounts. And to you we say: Is that all you can do? You are not in our league”. In fact, the group claims to have hacked over 10,000 Facebook profiles, more than 150 Facebook groups and over 5,000 Twitter accounts. “Many of these accounts have been given to supporters and if Allah permits the rest of them will be distributed also.” The amateur video includes a montage in which Zuckerberg’s and Dorsey’s faces are in flames and in a hail of bullets.
According to Zuckerberg, this is the first threat from Isis, which had already targeted Twitter in 2014, threatening to kill then-CEO Dick Costolo. Last year, Dorsey was accused by the organization of having launched a “war”, making the company’s employees become “targets”. Over the last eight months, Twitter has suspended more than 125,000 Isis-related accounts. Yet, at the same time it warned that there are no magic formulas to identify terrorist content.