Twitter uncovers Russia-backed bot accounts used to spread propaganda during 2016 election

Recently it has been revealed that Facebook was used by Russia-linked operatives to manipulate the said election.

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After news surfaced that several Russia-linked operatives had bought Facebook ads during the controversial 2016 presidential election to spread divisiveness among Americans, Twitter has now announced that it has discovered a similar kind of fraud occurring on its platform, reported Engadget.

Following their recent investigation, Facebook released 450 such accounts in total. Now Twitter has said that it was able to match 22 of those accounts on its own social media site. The platform suspended all these 22 accounts, immediately. Add to that, Twitter has also found another 179 accounts somehow connected to those 22 accounts. These accounts had no link with any of the 450 Facebook ones, reported the publication.

Reportedly, Collin Crowell, Twitter VP for Public Policy, has already met with the members of the Senate and the House Select Committee on Intelligence, in order to discuss Russia's involvement in the 2016 presidential election.

"Facebook accounts from the International Research Agency are likely just the 'tip of the iceberg,'" a congressional aide told the Washington Post, speaking on an anonymity clause.

Twitter entered these hearings by proactively sharing a roundup of three Russia Today accounts, which had targeted the US market during the election campaign with ads. According to Twitter, the accounts had spent a total of around $274,100 to endorse 1,823 ads. These were directed towards the followers of the major media outlets and wanted to promote RT's own coverage of trending news events, reported the publication.

Also Read: Cyberattack on Deloitte compromised clients' private information

Add to that Twitter has also shared information pertaining to the voting scams, such as the "text-to-vote." (You cannot vote via text). Although the platform couldn't find any Russia link to such schemes, the majority of them were automated.

"We'll be rolling out several changes to the actions we take when we detect spammy or suspicious activity. Including introducing new and escalating enforcement for suspicious logins, Tweets, and engagements, and shortening the amount of time suspicious accounts remain visible on Twitter while pending confirmation," wrote a Twitter representative in a release.

Related topics : Us presidential election