How some people tricked Google into getting their own knowledge panels and tricked Amazon-owned IMDb into believing they were the main stars in dozens of movies. From the report: I happened to be browsing IMDb when I came across the page for Ranbir Kapoor’s upcoming film Animal. I saw the cast details and found a face and a name I didn’t recognize. Learning about this guy opened up a whole new world of how many young Indian men from small towns use the system to make their own fake influence online. So who is this guy? I hadn’t heard of him before, and he’s listed in the Best Cast category for this movie, along with Indian actor Ranbir Kapoor. According to his IMDb page, he has acting roles in some big budget productions. I’m beginning to suspect this may be a case of IMDb vandalism. IMDb allows anyone to add and edit pages. They don’t allow you to see the edit history of a page like Wikipedia does, and obviously edits aren’t reviewed efficiently either.

I googled this guy. Wow, Google has a knowledge panel about him. There are also links to his music on various music platforms. OK, so maybe he’s impersonating an actor on IMDb, but according to his Google search results, he’s actually a real musician? Looking through the search results, I found biographies written about him on several sites that raise questions about credibility. Like this one on a website called I looked through his YouTube and other social media profiles and he doesn’t have many followers or music content. I shazam a couple of his songs and they’re just copies of existing random music mixed together using an audio editing tool like Audacity. Possibly to avoid a copyright notice. Hmm. I think now I’m starting to understand more clearly what’s going on here.

He has created a profile on various music streaming platforms. Uploaded remix of existing songs using audio editing software. Posted biographies and profiles about myself on sites that do not verify materials. Set up an IMDb page with fake credits. All this to make Google believe that he is a prominent person. […] I went back to his IMDb and checked the cast details of some of the movies he’s been in. And I found several dozen profiles with exactly the same modus operandi.

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