Meta removing more than 500 Chinese accounts

Meta removing more than 500 Chinese accounts

Meta, earlier Facebook, has removed networks in Palestine, Poland, Belarus, Italy, France, Vietnam and one that was primarily based in China and comprised more than 500 accounts. The networks have been closed for spreading disinformation and mass-attacks.

A network of accounts that originated in Italy and France was removed for targeting medical professionals, journalists, and elected officials with mass harassment. The investigation linked this activity to an anti-vaccination conspiracy movement called V_V, publicly reported to engage in violent online and offline behaviours.

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The company removed a network of accounts in Vietnam for violating Inauthentic Behavior policy against mass reporting. The network coordinated to falsely report activists and other people who publicly criticized the Vietnamese government for various violations in an attempt to have these users removed from Facebook.

Networks from Palestine, Poland, Belarus, and China were removed for disinformation. Each of these networks targeted people in multiple countries at once.

Palestine: Meta removed 141 Facebook accounts, 79 Pages, 13 Groups and 21 Instagram accounts from the Gaza Strip in Palestine that primarily targeted people in Palestine, and to a much lesser extent in Egypt and Israel. Meta said it was part of an investigation into suspected coordinated inauthentic behaviour in the region and linked it to Hamas.

Poland: The company removed 31 Facebook accounts, four Groups, two Facebook Events and four Instagram accounts that is believed to originate in Poland and targeted Belarus and Iraq. The company said this was part of an investigation into suspected coordinated inauthentic behavior in the region while monitoring the crisis at the border between Belarus and the EU.

Belarus: Removal of 41 Facebook accounts, five Groups, and four Instagram accounts in Belarus that primarily targeted audiences in the Middle East and Europe. These were found in an investigation into suspected coordinated inauthentic behaviour also while monitoring the crisis at the border between Belarus and the EU. Meta said it was linked to the Belarusian KGB.

China: Meta removed 524 Facebook accounts, 20 Pages, four Groups and 86 accounts on Instagram. This network originated primarily in China and targeted global English-speaking audiences in the United States and United Kingdom, and also Chinese-speaking audiences in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Tibet. The company said it started looking into this activity after reviewing public reporting about the single fake account at the centre of this operation. The investigation found links to individuals in mainland China, including employees of Sichuan Silence Information Technology Co, Ltd, an information security firm, and individuals associated with Chinese state infrastructure companies located around the world.

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