Meta claims US navy hyperlink to on-line propaganda marketing campaign

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“Individuals associated with the US military” are linked to an internet propaganda marketing campaign, Meta’s newest adversarial-threat report says.

The marketing campaign was the primary main covert pro-US propaganda operation taken down by a big-tech firm, unbiased researchers mentioned in August.

It supported the US and its allies, whereas opposing nations equivalent to Russia, China and Iran.

But consultants mentioned it was largely ineffective.

On Facebook, 39 accounts, 16 pages, and two teams have been eliminated, in addition to 26 accounts on Instagram, for violating the platforms’ coverage towards “coordinated inauthentic behaviour”.

“This network originated in the United States,” Meta wrote.

It targeted on nations together with Afghanistan, Algeria, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Somalia, Syria, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Yemen – and mirrored techniques generally utilized in propaganda campaigns towards the West, together with:

  • pretend personas
  • artificially generated photographs
  • campaigns throughout a number of platforms

Graphika/Stanford University

The accounts focusing on Iran had criticised Iranian authorities and their insurance policies and posted about points equivalent to ladies’s rights, researchers mentioned.

Some of these supporting the US had posed as unbiased media retailers and a few had tried to move off content material from respectable retailers, equivalent to BBC News Russian, as their very own.

The operation ran throughout many web companies, together with Twitter, YouTube, Telegram, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki, in response to Meta.

‘Public belief’

“Although the people behind this operation attempted to conceal their identities and coordination, our investigation found links to individuals associated with the US military,” its report says.

But a lot of the posts had “little to no engagement” from actual customers.

US assume tank the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab managing editor Andy Carvin informed the BBC when the marketing campaign was first revealed, it might be “ineffective and counterproductive” for democracies to undertake such campaigns, as a result of it meant utilizing “the very tactics used by your adversaries” and “further eroding public trust”.

Meta’s announcement confirms earlier reporting by the Washington Post. Sources informed the newspaper concern over the operation had made the Pentagon full “a sweeping audit” of how the US navy carried out clandestine info warfare.

The US Department of Defense informed BBC News it was “aware of the report published by Meta”.

“At this time, we do not have any further comments on the report or potential actions that may be taken by the department as a result of the report,” it added.