Fake black activist social media accounts linked to Russian Federation government

Posted October 01, 2017

The House and Senate intelligence committees are also set to receive the advertisements as part of their ongoing probe into Russian interference in the election and into out how social media was used as a weapon.

For reasons that were unclear, Twitter's investigation was largely built around Facebook's recent discovery that advertisers with possible ties to the Kremlin had spent $100,000 in ads on its platform.

Trump's Twitter attack came as the giant social network faces intensifying scrutiny for Russia-linked advertisements created to help Trump's candidacy.

Although Twitter's disclosures in briefings to U.S. congressional staff and a public blog post were its most detailed to date on the issue, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee called the company's statements "deeply disappointing".

Twitter said it had identified and deleted 22 accounts directly linked to about 450 fake Facebook accounts tied to Russian Federation. RT accounts spent $274,100 on USA -targeted Twitter ads in 2016, promoting 1,823 tweets about news stories towards users who follow of mainstream media accounts. On Thursday, Twitter said the 22 accounts which were linked to the Facebook accounts, have already been suspended for violations of its terms and conditions of use.

Twitter disclosed that it has discovered about 200 suspicious Russian accounts and Media Group that bought advertisement targeted at United States audiences during the election.

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"Due to the nature of these inquiries, we may not always be able to publicly share what we discuss with investigators", said the company in its blog post.

Those ad buys topped the $100,000 that Facebook said it discovered on its network that were linked to a Russian propaganda operation during the 2016 election campaign, a revelation that prompted calls from US legislators for more regulation of such social media advertising. The company also unearthed an additional 179 related or linked accounts. The Twitter accounts, which were taken down over the last month, were linked to 470 accounts and pages that Facebook traced to the International Research Agency, a Russian troll farm.

The charges are so serious that a congressional committee in the U.S. is investigation whether Russian Federation influenced the outcome in the USA presidential polls and in what way.

The House Intelligence Committee's top Democrat, Adam Schiff of California, said he hopes to arrange another meeting between panel lawmakers and Twitter officials soon.

Moscow denies any such activity, and Trump dismissed any talk of such collusion.

Last week Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that his social media company would also be handing over in information to Congress about accounts that were found on the site and believed to be used for advertising during the election.