Concerns have been raised over the alleged increase in neo-Nazi content on Telegram.
The Dubai-based social media platform has reportedly begun removing some content and even some channels in response to the trend, which comes as the platform has, by its own estimation, acquired 25 million new users in the past week.
NBC News claims that at least fifteen far-right channels on Telegram have recently been banned, while content had been censored on other channels.
Part of the rise in user numbers is allegedly due to white supremacists and neo-Nazis leaving major platforms which are moving to curb hate speech. However, Telegram founder, Pavel Durov, claimed that the “vast majority” were those who “no longer want to be held hostage by tech monopolies.”
Whatever the truth, Megan Squire, a professor of computer science who monitors extremist groups, claimed that a number of Telegram channels were still “actively posting explicitly white supremacist and pro-Nazi content.”
NBC’s national security analyst, Frank Figliuzzi, a former assistant FBI director, welcomed the curbs at Telegram, claiming that such crackdowns “help to keep the violent extremists off-balance.” As they “scramble to find new homes, they inevitably make mistakes,” leaving “clues and trails” that law enforcement can use to defeat them, he said.