Kenyans on Twitter (KOT) are set to be affected by new security measures introduced by the social media app in its quest to curb the spread of spam accounts as well as malicious automation and platform manipulation of the twitterspace.

The measures which appear on the social networking service’s blog will impact the over 1 million KOT going by statistics released in the State of the Internet in Kenya 2017 report.

Here’s how the new measures will work ;

1. Updated Twitter account metrics

Twitter will seek to update account metrics in near real time

2. Improved sign up process

3. Audit of existing accounts

4. Expansion of malicious behaviour detection systems

Twitter is known for its influence in setting the agenda globally and locally by dictating trends as well as its capability to allow discussions to simmer, be explored and in some circumstances explode beyond controllable boundaries.

Over the past 12 months for example, key events in Kenya have been followed on Twitter, with last year’s contentious presidential election top on the agenda. Other hashtags such as #LipaKamaTender, #GitheriMan and #UhuruChallenge have also been prevalent. At the same time, this year’s Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, as well as the 2018 Fifa World Cup have generated loads of tweets, retweets, likes and conversations online.

However, Twitter also has certain ills, such as the nefarious nature of scrupulous minds to activate spam accounts. Illegitimate automated accounts pop up daily, serving many — purposes. Some are keen to propagate propaganda be it personal, political or corporate. On the other hand, others are criminal in nature, loitering the Twittersphere with the intention of finding a mark to con by suggesting non-existent financial fantasies, among others.

Twitter has said it will begin asking for email addresses or phone numbers to confirm new accounts as part of a battle against manipulation, particularly by automated bots.

Adding a way to check that a real person is behind new accounts was described by Twitter as being among measures to fight abuse, trolls, and hateful content.

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