Facebook finds a network of "false news" in the United Kingdom


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Facebook has removed more than 130 accounts, pages and groups that say they were part of a disinformation network in the UK.

The company said it was the first time it knocked down a UK-based group by sending messages to British citizens.

The same group created pages that proposed both extreme right-wing and anti-fascist activists.

Facebook stated that it had shared its discovery with the forces of order and the government.

The group was able to get followers by creating innocent pages and groups. He later renamed them and started publishing politically motivated content.

The deputy Damian Collins, who chairs a committee investigating the false news, said it was the "tip of the iceberg".

Hate speech

Facebook said around 175,000 people followed at least one of the fake pages, which included 35 profiles on Instagram.

The company said the pages "were involved in hate speech and spread contradictory comments on both sides of the political debate in the UK".

"They have often posted local and political news, including topics such as immigration, freedom of speech, racism, LGBT issues, far-right politics, issues between India and Pakistan and religious beliefs including Islam and Christianity.

"We take these pages and these accounts based on their behavior, not the content they posted." In each of these cases, the people behind this activity were coordinated with each other and used false accounts to represent themselves incorrectly, and this was the basis for our action. "

The BBC understands that Facebook has uncovered the network of non-genuine accounts while investigating hate speech about the UK Home Secretary, Sajid Javid.

Non-genuine activity

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One of the posts tried to create tension between Christians and LGBT people

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Another post on Facebook has tried to insult "the left"

Facebook said the pages spent about $ 1,500 (£ 1,140) on advertising between them. The first announcement was published in December 2013 and the most recent in October 2018.

Facebook has declared that it has not completed the "revision of the organic contents coming from these accounts".

Separately, the company also removed 31 pages, groups and accounts to engage in "coordinated inauthentic behavior" in Romania.

These accounts, unrelated to the UK network, have published distorted news in support of the Social Democratic Party.


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