The Korea Herald


China-made phony news sites spreading pro-Beijing propaganda in South Korea: NIS

By Kim Arin

Published : Nov. 13, 2023 - 18:26

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(National Intelligence Service of Korea) (National Intelligence Service of Korea)

South Korea’s spy service suspects Chinese agencies are behind the operation of fake websites posing as well-known South Korean news outlets to spread propaganda.

The National Intelligence Service said Monday that Chinese press relations agencies Haimai and Haixun created phishing websites that look like websites of news outlets here and then generated a series of stories it said are “pro-China” and “anti-US."

Some of the examples of the stories circulated by the phony news websites included ones disparaging South Korea’s participation in the US President Joe Biden-led Summit for Democracy and others praising the Chinese government’s control of the COVID-19 pandemic, it alleged.

The NIS believes that the websites made by the Chinese agencies could be a part of the Beijing’s covert online influence operations.

The NIS said it plans on closing down 38 such websites, all found to have been carrying pro-China messages.

The NIS said it has asked for the cooperation of social media sites where the Chinese-generated propaganda stories are being circulated to take them down.