Tamara Yesmin Toma

Researcher, Dismislab
Mashrafe & Shakib’s old videos in betting app promotion with fake audio
This article is more than 1 month old

Mashrafe & Shakib's old videos in betting app promotion with fake audio

Tamara Yesmin Toma

Researcher, Dismislab

Two video reels (1, 2) have been seen circulating on social media, in which former captains of the Bangladesh national cricket team, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza and Shakib Al Hasan, are seen promoting betting apps. However, verification shows that Mashrafe and Shakib did not participate in any such betting app campaign. The doctored reels are made by adding fake audio to their old interview videos, Dismislab found.

In the videos, Mashrafe and Shakib can be heard speaking Bangla in distorted accents. Consequently, understanding the audio became challenging. 

In the fake video, Mashrafe is heard saying, “I can recommend you a great Aviator game. With its help, any Bangladeshi can become financially independent. Right now, more than 50 thousand Bangladeshis play aviator games daily, increasing their capital. Click the link below to get the app.”

In the fake video of Shakib, he is heard saying, “You can earn 10,000 per day just by playing the Crazy Time. This is a very common game and very popular in Bangladesh. Many of my friends play it in the evening, and they are doing great. This is a very simple game. Many Bangladeshi citizens are playing it and winning daily. Download this game now and start playing. Because it is a quick-earning opportunity. Don’t miss this opportunity.”

A YouTube video titled “Which one is more difficult for Mashrafe, cricket or politics?” was found while searching for the source of Mashrafe’s video used in the betting app’s campaign. The original video was posted on July 1, 2023, on the official YouTube channel of Somoy TV, where the former captain is seen talking about his personal and professional life on the specialized programme for Eid.

Dismislab’s verification found that the video, promoting the betting app, was created by editing a part of the original video from 13.36 seconds to 13.56 seconds. The audio in this section was replaced with audio promoting the betting app. The reel was spread from a foreign language page called “Fun Games Online“. Using Google Translator, the page name and all posts in it appear to be Thai. The page is saturated with content promoting gambling and casino activities. The last visible post on the page is from January 2021. There is no mention of the country from which the page is being operated or the location of the page administrator. According to the Facebook Ad Library, an advertisement has been running on the page since February 27th. While the campaign using Mashrafe’s name doesn’t mention a specific betting app or website, the ad instructs viewers to download an app called “Crazy Time Pin-Up Casino.”

On the other hand, while searching for the source of Shakib’s video, a video was found on the official YouTube channel of Cricbuzz. The video titled “IPL 2017: Shakib Al Hasan calls Kolkata his second home” was uploaded on April 19, 2017. Shakib Al Hasan gave this interview to Cricbuzz during the IPL, sharing his experience of playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders. The fake video was created by cutting and editing the original video from 2.41 seconds to 2.45 seconds. Here too, the original audio was removed and replaced with audio promoting a betting site called Crazy Time.

The reel was promoted on a page called “Bimanchalok Bangladesh“. The location provided by the page claims to be in Cox’s Bazar. The page contains a link to a website called bangladeshavia.online, however, the website is not accessible. This page has previously been seen spreading fake videos in the name of Shakib Al Hasan. That time the edited video was a clip from another interview Shakib gave to the sports website Cricbuzz. 

Dismislab fact-checked a fake video of Shakib Al Hasan used in another betting site’s campaign on February 27. In the edited video, Shakib was seen asking everyone to download the ElonBet betting app. Earlier, a fake video of Mustafizur Rahman, another Bangladeshi cricketer, also promoted this betting site.