Twitter to notify users who got played by Russian propaganda accounts

Twitter to notify users exposed to Russian propaganda during U.S. elections
Twitter to notify users exposed to Russian propaganda during U.S. elections  20 Jan 2018- 7:56
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21 January, 2018

Today, Twitter revealed some of its findings.

Twitter plans to inform almost 700,000 people they interacted with accounts linked to the Russian government, the social media giant said.

Twitter said Friday that it has suspended 1,062 new accounts it has found to be linked to the Internet Research Agency, a Russian "troll farm" which disseminated content meant to interfere in the US political process.

Twitter has suspended 1,062 accounts that were allegedly linked to the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency (IRA) and shared information meant to meddle with the 2016 United States presidential election. Facebook previously determined that IRA accounts posted roughly 80,000 posts published between 2015 and 2017, the likes of which were viewed by roughly 140 million users. Twitter said those Russian accounts posted 175,993 tweets in the 10 weeks before the November 2016 election, approximately 8.4 per cent of which were election-related.

Some U.S. lawmakers have been urging social media firms, including Twitter and Facebook, to alert their users if they were potentially exposed to Russian propaganda.

Twitter said it had identified "both more IRA and automated Russia-based accounts".

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All the suspicious accounts in question have been suspended, noted Twitter's blog post.

Facebook co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said the network would seek to "prioritise news that is trustworthy, informative, and local".

So far, the company has found 3,814 Twitter accounts that were likely under the control of Internet Research Agency, a Russian company many believe is backed by the Kremlin.

As part of its recent update, Twitter said it is emailing 677,775 accounts held by USA individuals who positively interacted with the suspected accounts - that is, people who either liked content from them, retweeted content from them, or followed the accounts. Rather, Twitter will be dropping a little email truth bomb: You got played by a Russian troll army.

Twitter also included a selection of imagery tweeted by the allegedly Kremlin-controlled Twitter feeds in its post.

The company said that it found 13,512 additional automated Twitter accounts linked to Russia during the election season, bringing the total of Russian-linked bots to 50,258.


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