Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced in a post yesterday that the network is “taking an important step to protect the integrity of elections around the world”, by deleting over 270 pages and accounts operated by a Russian organisation called the Internet Research Agency (IRA).
According to Facebook, the agency “has repeatedly acted deceptively and tried to manipulate people in the US, Europe and Russia”, and is described as a “troll factory”.
In February, IRA was among three firms and 13 Russians indicted by US Special Counsel Robert Mueller on suspicions of conspiring to tamper with the presidential campaign.
Zuckerberg offered some background to the announcement to show that Facebook has been actively trying to remove fake accounts and troll posts from the platform. For example, they took down 30,000 fake accounts in France leading up to the presidential election and worked with the Federal Office for Information Security to learn from them about the threats they encountered.
The CEO added that the company has “significantly increased” its investment in security, and now has around 15,000 people working on security and content review and will add more this year. However, he also said that “security isn’t a problem you ever fully solve”.