US President Donald Trump, who claims to be a devoted user of Twitter as a medium to disseminate authentic information to his followers, has retweeted a bot and is yet to realise it. According to a report in the Newsweek, the account retweeted by Trump used the handle “@protrump45” and was run under the name Nicole Mincey. As of Monday, the account has been suspended. Also Read - Explained: Can Twitter get banned in India?Also Read - Twitter vs government: Twitter India loses legal protection for not complying with IT rules on time
“We do not comment on individual accounts for privacy and security reasons,” a Twitter spokesperson was quoted as saying. The bot or the fake account had tweeted an image of Trump emblazoned with the message “Trump fights for us.” The bot tweeted the image in a reply to Trump that read “Trump working hard for the American people….thanks,” followed by emojis of a heart and the US flag. Also Read - Twitter friends/followers seeking your unwanted attention could be Unmentioned
After Trump shared @protrump45’s tweet, his followers began to suspect something fishy. It was found that the “@protrump45” was a bot account created to share pro-Trump messages. “Twitter user (@protrump45) appeared to be running an advertising campaign linked to a site selling pro-Trump merchandise,” said Eliot Higgins, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab. ALSO READ: Twitter has an ugly new font, and the Twitterati hates it big time
“The account was linked to a website, “protrump45.com”, which sells merchandise associated with the Trump campaign, such as T-shirts and hoodies carrying messages like ‘Make America Great Again!’ or ‘Deplorable Lives Matter’,” the report noted. Though the bot changed its username to “@AlexandriaM0ra” after Trump retweeted the message, it was soon suspended by the Twitter.