Facebook beefing up team to thwart election manipulation

2017-10-02 22:25
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. (Paul Sakuma, AP)

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. (Paul Sakuma, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

San Francisc - Facebook on Monday said it will hire more than 1 000 people to thwart deceptive ads crafted to knock elections off course.

The announcement came as the leading social network turned over to Congress some 3 000 Russia-linked ads that appeared to use hot-button issues to turn people against one another ahead of last year's US election.

"Today we are delivering those ads to congressional investigators," Facebook vice president of global policy Joel Kaplan said in an online post.

"Many appear to amplify racial and social divisions."

The ads appeared to be linked to a Russian entity known as the Internet Research, and violated Facebook policies because they came from inauthentic accounts, according to Kaplan.

"Aggressive steps" by Facebook will include hiring more than 1 000 people to bolster its global ads review teams in the coming year, Kaplan said.

Facebook also planned to ramp up investment in machine learning to identify and take down ads violating the social network's policies.

"Enforcement is never perfect, but we will get better at finding and removing improper ads," Kaplan said.

Political clashes 

Facebook will require those interested in running ads related to US elections to confirm businesses or organisations they represent.

Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg last month announced a crack-down on efforts to use the leading social network to meddle with elections.

Zuckerberg outlined a series of steps that would help prevent the manipulation of the social network, including more transparency on political ads appearing on Facebook.

Facebook last month agreed to hand over information about the ads from the Internet Research Agency to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of the 2016 election..

An internal Facebook review showed that Russia-linked fake accounts were used to buy ads aimed at exacerbating political clashes ahead of and following the 2016 US presidential election.

Some 470 accounts spent a total of approximately $100 000 between June 2015 to May 2017 on ads that touted fake or misleading news or drove traffic to pages with such messages, a Facebook official said.

While the amount of money involved was relatively small, enough to buy roughly 3 000 ads, the accounts or pages violated Facebook policies and were shut down, according to Facebook chief security officer Alex Stamos.

Zuckerberg over the weekend posted a message marking the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, or day of atonement, asking forgiveness "for the ways my work was used to divide people rather than bring us together."

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

News24 (@News24) | Twitter

The latest Tweets from News24 (@News24). News24 is Southern Africa and Africa's premier online news resource reaching over 2.3 million local users each month. South Africa

Read more on:    facebook  |  us

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.