Facebook has just revealed news that they found a campaign on their social site which was funded by Russia to promote disruptive social and political messages.
According to social media giant, $100,000 (£77,000) was spent on about 3,000 ads over a two-year period on the campaign which was ended in May 2017.
Although the there is no specific political party behind the ads but instead posted on topics including immigration, race and equal rights.
Facebook stated it was co-operating with a US investigation into the matter.
Now social site is handing over the relevant evidence to special prosecutor Robert Mueller, who is supervising an inquiry into suspected Russian interference in last year’s US presidential election.
The ads were manipulating users and directed them towards approximately 470 accounts which were causing to spread bogus information or were or else in breach of Facebook’s terms and conditions, the site said.
“The ads and accounts appeared to focus on amplifying divisive social and political messages across the ideological spectrum,” the company said in a blog post published on Wednesday.
The accounts in question have now been shut down, Facebook’s chief security officer Alex Stamos added.
How the campaign was exposed?
The campaign was revealed due to the internal investigation conducted by Facebook in an attempt to find out the ways in which the social network may have been battered throughout the last US presidential election campaign.
Mark Zuckerberg was also extremely criticized for not taking the issue seriously in the days next to President Donald Trump’s elections win. Mr Zuckerberg discharged the perception that “fake news” on Facebook had persuaded the election as “crazy”.
In a recent post, Mr Stamos provided the details, about how the campaign was revealed.
“[We] looked for ads that might have originated in Russia, even those with very weak signals of a connection and not associated with any known organised effort.
This was a broad search, including, for instance, ads bought from accounts with US IP addresses but with the language set to Russian – even though they didn’t necessarily violate any policy or law.”
“In this part of our review, we found approximately $50,000 in potentially politically related ad spending on roughly 2,200 ads.” He added.
At the day when Facebook was blamed for increasing its advertising reach, the news of Facebook’s finding about campaign came out at the same day.
Wall Street Journal report writes about this matter and according to that “Facebook told potential advertising partners that it could reach 41 million 18-24 year olds in the US. However, official US census data suggests, there ought to be only 31 million populace of that age in the country.
Russian reply on this issue:
On the other hand, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said Russia had nothing to do with this campaign.
“We have never heard of this, we do not know anything about this, let alone have anything to do with these affairs,” he was quoted as saying by the state news agency Tass.