Published On: Sat, Mar 14th, 2020

Facebook and Twitter Exposes Rusian-Led Troll Accounts

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The social media platforms have exposed a campaign operating from Nigeria and Ghana. The campaign was overseen in Russia, and was targeting the US audience.

Facebook and Twitter have exposed the network of trolls, who were running a campaign on these social media platforms. The main target of these campaigns were the US audience, however they were working from Nigeria and Ghana, and were backed by Russian trolls.These accounts were removed on Thursday.

The network was small and consisted of 49 accounts on Facebook, 71 accounts on Twitter, and 85 accounts on Instagram. But it is the first time that a Russian-backed operation was working from Africa.

The  networks have been running campaigns since June 2019. According to the Head of Security Policy at Facebook, Nathaniel Gleicher, the operation was shut down before it could scale remarkably.

He said “The network was in the early stages of building an audience.

The accounts managed to build up a great number of networks. There were 68,000 followers on accounts on Twitter, and instagram accounts had 265,000 followers.

Graphika, an analytic firm carried out a research which indicated that only a few posts went viral and they gathered ten of thousand of shares and likes.

Regarding the accounts, Twitter said “the accounts attempted to sow discord by engaging in conversation about social issues, like race and civil rights”.

The accounts posted information in English and they presented themselves in a way as they are located in the US, but they were actually operating from Ghana and Nigeria. These accounts were operated by a small group named EBLA. Facebook said that the group was tied to people associated with Russian-based Internet Agency (IRA).

Head of Cybersecurity Policy at Facebook, Nathaniel Gleicher said that the accounts attempted to increase their audience by posting US news and topics like celebrity gossip, fashion, black history, and black excellence. He further said, “They also shared content about oppression and injustice, including police brutality”.

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