Fake Facebook Accounts Being used to Influence American Politics

By , in Companies on .

Mischievous Facebook users are now creating fake Facebook accounts in order to influence Facebook users politically. Already, Facebook has taken down close to 559 pages and 251 accounts that are a part of the organized campaigns that are influencing US politics. The accounts that are run by Americans just show how Russian malicious techniques are being used in the current elections just as they were used in the 2016 US elections.

Facebook has announced a continuous crackdown on these fake pages and accounts as they go against the social networking site’s rules against spam and organized fake behavior. The Silicon Valley networking firm however did not mention the source of these accounts, though it has been reported that the accounts are run by Americans.

Commenting about the matter, Facebook’s head of cyber security, Nathaniel Gleicher wrote that most of these Americans are creating extra accounts using the same names. They make several posts through these accounts in the many network groups and pages they are part of in order to drive traffic to their websites.

The same techniques have been used to make their content popular on Facebook than it was in the past. Other fake account owners are ad farms that use the social page to lie to people so that voters can think that they are actually forums holding political debates when they are not.

New York Times has mentioned Right Wing News as one of the many pages that were caught up in the crackdown. The page is popular for spreading fake news using the right-win slant. Other pages mentioned include Resistance and Reverb Press, both left-wing pages.

The same technique was used by Russia during the 2016 US elections to influence US politics using a well-orchestrated campaign which used fake accounts that spread fake and misleading information.

Critics have however attacked Facebook on the crackdown especially on the timing since the closure of the account has come just a few weeks before the US midterm elections. Some believe that Facebook is not doing enough to counter abuse and misinformation in its platform.