Daily Management Review

30,000 Fake Accounts Cracked Down Upon In France by Facebook


As Facebook Inc. step up efforts to stop the spread of fake news, misinformation and spam, the social network giant said on Thursday it suspended 30,000 accounts in France.
The move is among the most aggressive yet by Facebook to move against accounts that violate its terms of service, rather than simply respond to complaints and comes 10 days before the first round of a hotly contested French presidential election.
Unless the company moves quickly to remove extremist propaganda or other content that violates local laws, as governments across the continent threaten new laws and fines and this has created a lot intense of pressure for Facebook.
But Facebook is not alone. In the run-up to the elections in France and Germany, the pressure on social media sites including Twitter, Google's YouTube and Facebook has intensified.
A program to use outside fact-checkers to combat fake news in users' feeds has already been put in place by Facebook.
Also on Thursday, in order to educate readers on how to spot fake news, Facebook took out full-page ads in Germany's best-selling newspapers.
In order to help Donald Trump win the presidency, the Russian government interfered with the U.S. election last year, U.S. intelligence agencies have determined. In order to promote right-wing, nationalist parties and undermine the European Union, a similar campaign is under way in Europe, officials say.
It was acting against 30,000 fake accounts in France, Facebook said in a blog post. Suspect accounts with high volumes of posting activity and the biggest audiences is the aim and the priority of this program, the company said.
In order to detect deceptive accounts being run by automated means, the company had strengthened its formula, two people familiar with Facebook's process were quoted in the media as saying.
The sources reportedly said that ahead of the French elections, the key motivator was the need to get tougher on misinformation. However, another aim of the program and the move is also to target accounts that generated spam for financial gain.
"We've made improvements to recognize these inauthentic accounts more easily by identifying patterns of activity — without assessing the content itself," Shabnam Shaik, a Facebook security team manager, wrote in an official blog post.
To identify repeated posting of the same content and increases in messaging, automated pattern-recognition technology is being used by the company.
Earlier Facebook had taken other moves to make it easier for users to report potential fraud and hoaxes and Thursday's action follows such other moves.

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