Facebook bans accounts over US midterms interference

By Alexander J Martin, technology reporter
Facebook has disrupted a disinformation campaign targeting the US midterm elections first detected by American law enforcement.
The disinformation campaign appears as if it could be tied to the same Russian company that has been charged with interfering in the 2016 presidential election, although Facebook's investigation is ongoing.
In a statement published the night before polls opened, the company said it had been contacted by the police about suspicious behaviour believed to be linked to foreign entities.Facebook said it was revealing the details of the campaign before it had all of the facts due to how soon the polls open.

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"Our very early-stage investigation has so far identified around 30 Facebook accounts and 85 Instagram accounts that may be engaged in coordinated inauthentic behaviour," the company said."Typically, we would be further along with our analysis before announcing anything publicly. But given that we are only one day away from important elections in the US, we wanted to let people know about the action we've taken and the facts as we know them today."Once we know more - including whether these accounts are linked to the Russia-based Internet Research Agency or other foreign entities - we will update this post."
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Facebook said it had blocked the accounts flagged by authorities, but it is not clear how active the accounts had been, nor what the manner of their "inauthentic behaviour" was.
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