Clean Up the Tibetan Social Media Network

The other day, Students for a Free Tibet (SFT) Asia Director Dorjee Tseten called on Tibetans to “clean up the Tibetan social media network.” The post quickly went viral on Tibetan social media and has sparked an important conversation on cybersecurity amid growing concerns about cybersecurity threats targeting Tibetans in the diaspora.

The original message from Facebook

TFC is reposting the original message and adding additional guidelines below:

Please read and share this critical message with fellow Tibetans to maintain the integrity of our online spaces. It is good practice for everyone on the Internet in general given the vast amount of fake, anonymous trolls out there in cyberspace. These troll accounts are also likely to increase with the upcoming 2016 exile elections as campaign season is upon us.

Please do not accept friend requests/follows from people you don’t know online. It goes without saying you shouldn’t engage them in discussion and immediately report them if they engage in abusive activities or appear to be a fake, anonymous account. Here are some warning signs of a fake account:

  • Photo of a celebrity or public figure as their profile picture and no personally identifiable information or photos
  • Excessive use of key Tibetan political dates/events (March 10, 1959 as birthdate, photos exclusively of Tibetan flag, only re-shares posts of others, etc.)
  • Engages in political discussions with derogatory language and obvious targeting of certain individuals meant to defame their character (e.g. Kundun)

For more information and resources on cybersecurity, please visit the Tibet Action Institute or Citizen Lab websites.

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