More than 600 accounts linked to Russia and Iran have been removed by Facebook. The social media giant has identified and taken down accounts that are believed to have engaged in misleading political behaviour ahead of the US mid-term elections in November. The social network said on Tuesday that it had removed 652 pages, groups, and accounts linked to Russia and, unexpectedly, Iran, for “coordinated inauthentic behaviour” that included the sharing of political material. In a statement, Facebook said it was “working closely with US law enforcement on this investigation”. Shortly after Facebook’s announcement, Twitter revealed that it had also suspended 284 accounts for “coordinated manipulation”, many of them apparently originating from Iran. Facebook has significantly stepped up policing of its platform since last year, when it acknowledged that Russian agents successfully ran political influence operations on Facebook aimed at swaying the 2016 presidential election. It said it had not concluded its review of the material and declined to say how or why the state-backed actors were behaving the way they did. But it said it had informed the US and UK governments as well as the US Treasury and State departments because of ongoing sanctions against Iran. “There’s a… Read full this story
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