Hunt for fake accounts: Meta strikes hard against pro-Chinese propaganda

Stephane Ficca

Hardware & gaming specialist

August 29, 2023 at 5:20 p.m.


Meta Facebook © © rafapress / Shutterstock

© Rafapress / Shutterstock

Meta announces that it has neutralized a vast network of fake accounts that tried to spread pro-Chinese propaganda on its platforms.

Facebook accounts, Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts have been disabled.

Facebook facing Chinese propaganda

Like other social networks, Facebook is a platform of choice for users who would like to engage in large-scale manipulation, based on ” fake news to use a now famous expression. Recently, Meta carried out a new operation aimed at dismantling a large network of fake accounts, which were trying to spread pro-Chinese propaganda on the network.

A total of 7,704 Facebook accounts, 954 Pages, 15 Groups and 15 Instagram accounts were identified and deleted by Meta’s security services, making it one of the largest networks of fake accounts ever discovered by the society.

Meta Facebook Instagram logo © Shutterstock

© Sergei Elagin / Shutterstock

According to Meta, the fake accounts in question attempted to spread pro-Chinese messages, including “ positive comments about China and its province of Xinjiang, but also criticism of the United States, Western foreign policies, and critics of the Chinese government, including journalists and scholars “.

A vast network for a very low virality

According to Ben Nimmo, Global Head of Threat Intelligence at Meta, these are “ the most prolific covert influence operation we know of in the world until today “. Still, despite the scale of the effort, Meta said the people behind the fake accounts weren’t particularly knowledgeable and never managed to go viral.

© KA STUDIO / Shutterstock

The majority of comments on the articles came from other fake accounts, which tried to make it seem like they were more popular than they were. Ben Nimmo said the group behind the accounts is also active on (ex-Twitter), Reddit, YouTube, TikTok, Pinterest and dozens of other social platforms, and is ‘one operation at a time’ broad and persistent which Meta will continue to track.

Source : Engadget

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