Many Vietnamese netizens have been frightened by several bogus Facebook pages claiming that the users are Islamic State members.
“Timur Zhunusov” has recently become a name commonly searched for by many Vietnamese netizens on the social networking site.
The Facebook nickname, originally belonging to a Russian user, has caught the attention of many people, most of whom are Vietnamese, after some statuses were posted there on Monday, indicating that Vietnam would be the militant group’s next target.
Many people have expressed their real fright seeing these posts, especially after the Islamic State claimed responsibility for a massacre with bombs and gunfire in Paris last week.
The account was blocked by the site programmers several hours after the status uploads, as its profile picture showed the image of Mohammed Emwazi, the British-Arab man seen in several execution videos produced by the Islamic State.
However, the name “Timur Zhunusov” remains a popular subject among Vietnamese users of Facebook, for many new accounts and public pages with the same name have been created since.
The owners of those accounts and pages claimed they are IS members and all used the image of Mohammed Emwazi as their profile pictures.
They have continued to upload statuses similar to those posted on the original page, with some even uploading explicit pictures and graphic videos of the militant group’s executions.
One of the accounts even took advantage of Google’s translation tool to write threatening statuses in Arabic.
The commentary sections of these pages have been filled with insults, threats and challenges, mostly written in Vietnamese by Vietnamese users.
As the phenomenon caught the attention of competent authorities in the nation, one owner of those Facebook accounts, who is a Vietnamese citizen, admitted that he had created the bogus page for attention and entertainment purposes before deleting the account.
Investigation also showed that other fake pages belong to Vietnamese users of the social media site.
Those users said that they created the pages to attract the attention of the Internet community, following the Islamic State’s attacks on Paris that killed at least 129 people and injured hundreds of others on November 13.
While the world is still praying for the victims slaughtered and wounded in the deadly terror assaults, several individuals consider the creation of these pages an opportunity for them to gain popularity online.