Papua New Guinea is taking a proactive approach to Facebook’s fake user problem. The country announced that they are banning the social media site for a month in a bid to crack down on “fake users” and study the effects the website is having on the population, according to The Guardian.
The country’s communication minister, Sam Basil, has been closely monitoring Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica data leak and has warned that the government never properly educated it citizens’ on the risks of using Facebook. That will change with the temporary shutdown. “The time will allow information to be collected to identify users that hide behind fake accounts, users that upload pornographic images, users that post false and misleading information on Facebook to be filtered and removed,” Basil told the Post Courier newspaper. “This will allow genuine people with real identities to use the social network responsibly.”
Papua New Guinea is a good test site for this tactic, as per Australia’s ABC, the government estimates that less than one-tenth of the country’s population uses Facebook. Of course, that is still some 600,000-700,000 people sharing private data online.