Iran steps up cyber war against Israel - using models

Report: Hundreds of social media accounts using photographs of models to pose as Israeli women are part of bid to sow division in Israel.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

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Iranian agents are working to sow division and strife among Israelis according to a new report – and they are using models from around the world.

According to a report by Channel 13’s Omri Maniv and the ‘Fake Reporter’ initiative, Iran has built a network of hundreds of fake Israeli social media profiles in recent months.

The fake profiles, mostly of young women, use images of models – often taken either from pornographic websites or modeling agencies – to target both Israeli social media users and even groups and networks.

Using these hundreds of fake social media accounts, handlers in Iran spread fake information amongst Israeli social media users, as well as to promote social tensions and political division.

For instance, last year, the fake profiles operated by Iranian agents consistently urged Israeli users to strictly adhere to mask-wearing requirements and social distancing, while excoriating the haredi sector, blaming it for the spread of the coronavirus.

More recently, however, the same accounts have decried the pandemic as a hoax and warned against the use of vaccines as being part of a global conspiracy.

The fake accounts were also used to create and manage an anti-Netanyahu group called “Ein Matzav (No Chance)”, which spread caricatures of Israeli political figures portrayed as Nazis, and claimed that the images had been created and shared by Israeli leftists.

Many accounts use images of scantily clad models – ostensibly the owner of the fake profile – to collect followers, while making highly charged political comments.

One account, for example, operates under the name “Noa Moshe”. Posing as a Tel Aviv resident, the account has over 2,000 followers and makes frequent comments – all in perfect Hebrew – on highly charged issues ranging from politics to military matters and the coronavirus pandemic. As part of the deception, the account consistently wishes followers “Shabbat Shalom” each week, and makes note of upcoming Jewish holidays.

The opinions pushed by the account change over time, but all share the goal of promoting division.

The photographs used by the account are actually of a Romanian model and blogger.



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