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Facebook removes hundreds of accounts and pages for political spam

Tyrone Stewart

Facebook laptopFacebook has removed more than 800 pages and accounts as it continues on its fight with fake news. The social network deleted 559 pages and 251 accounts that have ‘consistently’ broken its rules against spam and inauthentic activity.

Many of those that were removed, according to Facebook, had been using fake accounts with the same names and posted large amounts of content across groups and pages, while others tricked people into believe they were pages for legitimate political debate despite actually being ad farms.

The active push to remove the pages and accounts had been influenced the upcoming US midterm elections and the need for Facebook to keep its negative impact on the elections to a minimum.

“People need to be able to trust the connections they make on Facebook. It’s why we have a policy banning coordinated inauthentic behaviour — networks of accounts or Pages working to mislead others about who they are, and what they are doing,” said Facebook’s head of cybersecurity policy, Nathaniel Gleicher, and product manager, Oscar Rodriguez, in a blog post. “This year, we’ve enforced this policy against many Pages, Groups and accounts created to stir up political debate, including in the US, the Middle East, Russia and the UK. But the bulk of the inauthentic activity we see on Facebook is spam that’s typically motivated by money, not politics.”