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Facebook removes coordinated inauthentic behavior, spam from India & Pakistan

Social networking giant Facebook Inc. has announced on Monday that it has taken down 103 “assets” ─ pages, groups, and accounts of Pakistani and Indian origin that the company said were involved in “coordinated inauthentic behaviour”.

Head of Cybersecurity Policy, Nathaniel Gleicher, has shared the statement on the Fb Newsroom site, “We have removed Pages, Groups and accounts for violating Facebook’s policies on coordinated inauthentic behavior or spam. Today’s action includes four separate takedowns — each distinct and unconnected”.

According to the statement, Facebook has removed 103 Pages, Groups and accounts on both Facebook and Instagram for engaging in coordinated inauthentic behavior as part of a network that originated in Pakistan.

The statement further reveals about the Indian origin content, saying, “We removed 687 Facebook Pages and accounts — the majority of which had already been detected and suspended by our automated systems — that engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior in India and were linked to individuals associated with an IT Cell of the Indian National Congress (INC)”.

Facebook has also removed 15 Facebook Pages, Groups and accounts that engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior in India and were linked to individuals associated with an Indian IT firm, Silver Touch.

Social networking giant further explains that it is constantly working to detect and stop coordinated inauthentic behavior because Facebook does not want its services to be used to manipulate people.

Details of the cases were also shared on the newsroom site, mentioning that each case was identified violating accounts and Pages through ongoing internal investigations into coordinated inauthentic behavior in the region ahead of the upcoming elections in India. Facebook has also shared relevant information with policymakers and technology platforms.

Mentioning Pakistani cases, the statement reads: Today we removed 103 Pages, Groups and accounts for engaging in coordinated inauthentic behavior on Facebook and Instagram as part of a network that originated in Pakistan. The individuals behind this activity used fake accounts to operate military fan Pages; general Pakistani interest Pages; Kashmir community Pages; and hobby and news Pages. They also frequently posted about local and political news including topics like the Indian government, political leaders and military. Although the people behind this activity attempted to conceal their identities, our investigation found that it was linked to employees of the ISPR (Inter-Service Public Relations) of the Pakistani military.

Related Post

Mentioning Indian cases, the statement reads: Today we removed two separate and unrelated networks of Pages, Groups, and accounts that engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior on Facebook and Instagram in India. The first was linked to individuals associated with the INC IT Cell, and the second was connected to individuals associated with an Indian IT firm, Silver Touch. Here are some details.

 

 

Saman Siddiqui

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