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Cloudflare Blocks Kiwi Farms Citing Threat to Human Life, Website Resurfaces Via Russian Domain: Report

Activist Clara Sorrenti (Keffals) started a campaign calling on Cloudflare to stop providing services to the site.

Cloudflare Blocks Kiwi Farms Citing Threat to Human Life, Website Resurfaces Via Russian Domain: Report

Photo Credit: Pexels

Kiwi Farms was created by Joshua Conner Moon

Highlights
  • Cloudflare took Kiwi Farms offline
  • Kiwi Farms is a controversial online message board
  • Clara Sorrenti had been targeted by a harassment campaign

Cloudflare has removed support for Kiwi Farms known for hosting relentless online harassment campaigns after a surge in users making violent threats on the platform. The American internet services company said Kiwi Farms posed an “immediate threat to human life,” citing an increase of “targeted threats” over the past two days. Cloudflare's decision came as harassment campaigns against transgender YouTuber and Twitch streamer, Clara Sorrenti (called Keffals) were intensified. Sorrenti has been leading a campaign to pressure Cloudflare to drop Kiwi Farms, the website created and operated by Joshua Conner Moon.

In a blog post on Sunday, Cloudflare announced that it had blocked Kiwi Farms. "This is an extraordinary decision for us to make and, given Cloudflare's role as an Internet infrastructure provider, a dangerous one that we are not comfortable with" wrote CEO Matthew Prince.

"However, the rhetoric on the Kiwi Farms site and specific, targeted threats have escalated over the last 48 hours to the point that we believe there is an unprecedented emergency and immediate threat to human life unlike we have previously seen from Kiwi Farms or any other customer before" he added.

Members of the site organise harassment campaigns against transgender people, feminists and others for entertainment and gang up on victims. They pool their personal details in a practice called “doxxing”, posting the information online. "Swatting" is another practice of making false emergency calls to provoke an armed police response at a target's home, which has been linked to suicides

Canadian activist Clara Sorrenti was forced to flee her home after she was doxxed and swatted. Her online stalkers even continued to intensify their harassment campaign against her. She has been leading a campaign to pressure Cloudflare to drop Kiwi Farms.

According to a report by AP, the website was inaccessible on Sunday, while a Kiwi Farms website with an .ru domain was spotted online. It appears to be registered to DDoS-Guard, which is a Russian company. The firm has previously protected US conservative social media website Parler last year, after Amazon shut down hosting following the January 6 US Capitol attack, according to the report.


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Further reading: Cloudflare, Kiwi Farms, Keffals
Nithya P Nair
Nithya P Nair is a journalist with more than five years of experience in digital journalism. She specialises in business and technology beats. A foodie at heart, Nithya loves exploring new places (read cuisines) and sneaking in Malayalam movie dialogues to spice up conversations. More
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