Facebook And Twitter Alert On Sophistication Of Russian Trolls

Facebook and Twitter on Thursday revealed evidence indicating that Russian attempts to interfere with the United States presidential election are becoming increasingly sophisticated and difficult to detect.
The companies said they have removed dozens of fake accounts and fake pages from their platforms.
Facebook said the network of accounts it removed was in the “early stages” of gathering an audience. It was operated by people in Ghana and Nigeria on behalf of individuals in Russia. Accounts published on topics like black history, celebrity gossip, and fashion.
Meanwhile, Twitter said the accounts it has deleted were trying to sow discord by emphasizing social issues like race and civil rights without favoring any particular candidate or ideology.
The tactics the accounts used to avoid detection, and for which Russia basically hired third parties to work in West African countries, show that foreign interference remains a challenge to Facebook in the months leading up to the November elections.
The accounts Facebook removed were focused on fueling racial divisions. Some posed as legitimate non-governmental organizations to deceive people.
The accounts were removed after a report last week found that Moscow’s election interference campaign has not subsided since 2016 and, in fact, has become more difficult to detect.
That report, by Professor Young Mie Kim of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, found that social media accounts linked to Russia posted on the same divisive issues, race relations, gun law, and immigration, as they did in 2016, when the Kremlin polluted the walls of American voters with messages about the presidential election. Facebook has also deleted those accounts.
Last month, FBI Director Christopher Wray warned that Russia was still conducting an “information war” with an army of fictional characters on social media and bots spreading false information.
Russia has repeatedly denied its interference in the United States elections.