YouTube is enforcing its rule of not allowing “hacking and phishing instructions” videos on its platform. That became apparent when the agency accidentally declined an educational video from “white hat” security experts.
Kody Kinzie from Cyber Weapons Lab YouTube Channel reported that he got a warning from YouTube when he tried to upload a video about setting off fireworks over Wi-Fi. That upload failed, and Kinzie was referred to the rule that YouTube would ban “hacking and phishing instructions: showing users how to circumvent secure computer systems” from its platform.
Cyber Weapons Lab publishes videos about pentesting and hacking for white hats, hackers who use their skills legally and for good. YouTube tells The Verge that it has inadvertently flagged the channel’s videos as violating its rules and that they are allowed again, but critics point out that the rule could easily lead to the banning of security educational videos and thus encourage malicious hacking.
YouTube also appears to have banned legitimate videos with instructions about hacking in 2017 and 2018. Portswigger reported on this last year. However, the rule has been explicit in the video platform’s guidelines since February, when YouTube announced it would make its three strikes policy and guidelines more transparent and simple.