Over the last month, I have been tracking the story of a bot account swarm that has been hitting LinkedIn. The Microsoft-owned business social platform has been hit by millions of bot accounts mimicking executives from major companies. LinkedIn is now hitting back with a few important features.
While LinkedIn will continue to remove the AI-generated bots both algorithmically and manually, the new features will help users know if they are on a legitimate profile.
A simple and obvious feature that hasn't been available until now is a profile creation date. This means users can see when a LinkedIn profile was created. While it is not foolproof, it does provide a way to see if a profile was created recently (more likely to be a bot) or has been up for longer.
There is also a new “About This Profile” section that you can find by clicking the “More” button on the top of a profile. Here you will see the creation date, the last time it was updated with new info, and whether the account is verified.
Another tool LinkedIn is adding is a warning system for messages that highlight when something is high-risk content.
“We may warn you about messages that ask you to take the conversation to another platform because that can be a sign of a scam,” the company says in a blog post. “These warnings will also give you the choice to report the content without letting the sender know.”
Specifically, the company took down hundreds of thousands of bot profiles that were claiming to be Amazon or Apple employees.
LinkedIn has mostly been able to avoid the bot profiles that plague other social media networks. That now seems to be changing. Why fake profiles are becoming more common is unclear. Either way, it is good to see the company is proactively fighting back against the bot swarm.
Tip of the day: After years of hefting a laptop around, you inevitably build up a menagerie of Wi-Fi networks. For the most part, they'll sit on your PC, hardly used, but at times a change in configuration can make it difficult to connect to a network your computer already remembers. At this point, it can be beneficial to make Windows forget a Wi-Fi network and delete its network profile.