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Dozens of Facebook, Instagram accounts blocked over election interference concerns

Dozens of Facebook, Instagram accounts blocked over election interference concerns”

A handful of Twitter accounts, some of them with more than 10,000 followers, told the citizenry to vote Wednesday, not Tuesday, in a tactic to give blatant false information.

Russian Federation is accused of propaganda campaign in favour of Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential vote.

Facebook said it would normally take more time to investigate before making a public announcement, but has made a decision to act promptly due to the proximity of the us elections. Nearly all the Facebook Pages associated with these accounts appear to be in the French or Russian languages, while the Instagram accounts seem to have mostly been in English - some were focused on celebrities, others political debate.

The announcement came shortly after U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies said that Americans should be wary of Russian attempts to spread fake news.

Gleicher said the investigation began Sunday evening with a tip from US law enforcement, which discovered the suspicious online activity.

Facebook's purge is part of countermeasures to prevent abuses like those used by Russian groups two years ago to sway public opinion ahead of the 2016 US presidential election.

It comes after American security services revealed efforts by Russian Federation to spread misinformation and interfere in the 2016 presidential election, using Facebook as a tool to do so. "But given that we are only one day away from important elections in the United States, we wanted to let people know about the action we've taken and the facts as we know them today", Facebook added. It gave no number.

"Some were focused on celebrities, others political debate", he wrote, and did not list or further describe them. In August, another 652 pages also linked to Iran were taken down. Facebook has since identified and removed 30 Facebook accounts and 85 Instagram accounts.

Major online social platforms have been under intense pressure to avoid being used by "bad actors" out to sway outcomes by publishing misinformation and enraging voters.

Gleicher said Facebook is probing the suspected accounts to see whether they are linked to foreign entities including the Russia-based internet Research Agency, the shadowy troll farm whose associates have ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin and that was indicted earlier this year in special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Employees work in Facebook's "War Room", during a media demonstration, October 17, 2018, in Menlo Park, Calif.

The war room is part of stepped up security announced by Facebook, which will be adding some 20,000 employees.



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