Reuters. – Facebook Inc said on Tuesday it had removed a network of accounts from Russia that were linked to a marketing company aimed at recruiting influencers to push anti-vaccine content.
The social media company said it had banned accounts linked to Fazze, a UK-registered subsidiary of AdNow marketing company, which operates primarily from Russia, for violating its policy against foreign interference.
Facebook said the campaign primarily used its platforms to target audiences in India, Latin America, and, to a lesser extent, the United States.
The company’s researchers have described the campaign as “disinformation laundering,” creating misleading articles and petitions on forums like Reddit, Medium and Change.org, and using fake accounts on platforms like Facebook and Instagram to amplify content.
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Facebook said that while the majority of the campaign failed, it appeared to be aimed at engaging paid influencers and that the posts had attracted “some limited interest”.
False claims and conspiracy theories about Covid-19 and vaccines have been spreading on social media sites in recent months.
Big tech companies like Facebook have come under fire from US lawmakers and the administration of President Joe Biden, who say the spread of online lies about vaccines is making it difficult to fight the pandemic.
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