Meta purges mass reporting network in Russia for violating its policies
According to the company, a group from Belarus attempted to hack the Facebook accounts of military personnel in Ukraine.
Meta stated in its report on inauthentic behavior that it also posted videos taken from hacked accounts and called for the surrender of the Ukrainian army.
The hacking campaign known as Ghostwriter has been linked to the Belarusian government.
“We removed about 200 accounts that were operated from Russia. It was a coordinated effort to falsely report people, including bullying and hate speech, to get them and their posts removed on Facebook,” stated the company.
While most of these fake reports were focused on Russians and Ukrainians, there were also reports about users from other countries: Israel, The USA, Poland, and Canada.
This activity was carried out by people using fake, authentic, and duplicate accounts. They submitted hundreds, sometimes thousands, of complaints against their targets via Meta’s abuse reporting tools.
Meta stated that “Many accounts in this network were detected and disabled.”
According to the company, there had been attempts to disrupt state and non-state actors in the past to return to the platform. “In addition to spam networks using deceptive techniques to monetise public interest to the ongoing war,”
The company’s first quarterly adversarial risk report also included threats from multiple policy violations: Iran, Azerbaijan, South America, The Philippines, and the United States.
Russia blocked Facebook access in Russia last month. Meta, the parent company of Russia’s Facebook, halted all Russian ads.
Roskomnadzor, Russia’s communications agency, had blocked Facebook access citing 26 cases of “discrimination against Russian media” and information resources by Facebook since October 2020.