Categories: Technology
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January 10, 2019 7:29 am

Google’s search result manipulating bug could push political propaganda

By Diana

A bug affecting Google Search Engine actually lets the users alter the search results. Now, this bug might actually be very harmful if used by malefactors. It can effectively be used for pushing the political propaganda, promote some fake news, or oppressive views.

This particular feature, also dubbed as, “Knowledge Panel” is box-like option that normally appears over the right faction of search results. This highlights the most relevant search result pertaining to a specific query.

For example, if you were to search “What is the birthplace of Barack Obama?” this search result can be modified to show “Kenya” or any other place instead of “United States”. This bug was brought before the public by Wietze Beukema. He is a member at PwC’s Cyber Threat Detection & Response Team.

Beukema discovered this bug that can hijack the Google knowledge panels while adding them to the search queries. This can easily push the legitimate results away by highlighting the fake and incorrect ones. The answers look so legitimate that anyone can get fooled by the same.

This can easily be used to promote a false political propaganda or promote socially unacceptable trends. The bug has been existent for more than 3 years and it was Beukema who shed light to its presence.

Diana

Online journalism and the expanse of the digital platform is what intrigued Diana to move towards the development of content over the internet platform. As a technology buff, she loves to read and write about the latest advancements in the field of technology, especially about the latest gadgets.

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