After Amazon’s services were cut off, Parler found himself offline for a while. The sulphurous social network is returning to the web. But Russian technical assistance questions.
The social network Parler, which serves as a refuge in the United States for all the conservatives, radicals and pro-Trump activists who accuse the large community sites (Twitter, Facebook) of applying too harsh moderation against them, is once again in line – not without some difficulties. A message published by the platform reports unspecified technical concerns, which prevent users from taking advantage of the service.
Parler’s overhaul, obviously still fragile, was not done by Amazon, but by another web host, Epik. The reputation of this company is sulphurous. The Seattle-based company is described by Vice like a ” refuge of the far right », But also a place where extremist content can exist as well as neo-Nazis, supremacists, conspirators and negationists.
For a while, Epik provided his services to the infamous 8chan, but also to Gab, who is a Talking-bis.
« Our return is inevitable thanks to hard work and perseverance against all odds », Congratulated the founder of Parler, John Matze on January 18. ” Despite threats and harassment, not a single Parler employee resigned. We are getting closer and stronger as a team “. In another post, from Speaking this time, the site promises that it will be fully operational soon.
Amazon believes he had no choice
For its part, Amazon refuses to welcome Parler again on its hosting service (Amazon Web Services – AWS) as long as the social network does not implement a real moderation policy. According to Ars Technica, which quotes Amazon in a document sent to justice (Talking attacked Amazon), the host has alerted more than a hundred times Talking about the existence of violent and dangerous content.
« This case concerns the unwillingness and inability demonstrated by Parler “To actively remove dangerous content, writes AWS, including messages that incite and plan” rape, torture and murder of officials and citizens “. The suspension of Talking was taken ” last resort “, To prevent access to these contents and in anticipation of the coming to power of Joe Biden, whose assumption of office could be disrupted by die-hards.
The shortcomings in moderation on Talking are also the reason Google and Apple relied on to eject the Talking mobile app. The two heavyweights, which operate the only two major mobile operating systems, and also control the associated application stores, could however authorize its return if real changes take place. This is whathinted the CEO of Apple.
Help from the East
But the fact that Epik came to Talk’s rescue is probably not the thing that will generate the most ink. Indeed, it appears that all the traffic of the social network now goes through Russia, which raises all kinds of questions about the involvement of Moscow, whose shadow has never ceased to hover over Donald Trump’s mandate, but also on the capacity of the USA to spot and find possible insurgents who would organize themselves on Parler in order to commit an action on American soil.
Parler is back online now by routing 100 % of its user traffic through servers located within the Russian Federation.
Raise your hand if you understand the very significant impact this has on the ability to surveil and target insurrectionists who organize on Parler.
— Chris Vickery (@VickerySec) January 18, 2021
According to information obtained by Reuters, Parler benefits from technical support from a Russian company, DDoS-Guard, which specializes in providing services to websites – in particular, it offers tools to guard against distributed denial of service attacks (DDOS – distributed denial of service), by absorbing, diverting or even attenuating too great an influx of connections.
DDoS-Guard is also a provider sought after by extremist, racist and conspiratorial sites, indicates the US news agency. 8chan, for example, used his services. Reuters also reports that DDoS-Guard is potentially close to Russian power, as it has provided technical assistance to government sites – however, there is no evidence that this assistance was pushed by the Kremlin.
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Source: Numerama by www.numerama.com.
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