Facebook Removes ‘Inauthentic’ Accounts Originating From Iran

(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. said today that it removed pages, groups and accounts that engaged in “coordinated inauthentic behavior” directed from Iran, according to a post on its website.

The activity, which in some cases repurposed Iranian state media content, targeted people “across the world, although more heavily in the Middle East and South Asia. These were interconnected and localized operations, which used similar tactics by creating networks of accounts to mislead others about who they were and what they were doing,” it said.

Menlo Park, California-based Facebook, which removed pages from its main site and from Instagram, cut 82 fake pages, accounts and groups in October for similar reasons, as it sought to clean up the social network ahead of midterm elections in the U.S.

“We are constantly working to detect and stop this type of activity because we don’t want our services to be used to manipulate people,” Facebook’s Head of Cybersecurity Policy Nathaniel Gleicher wrote in today’s post, adding that the pages, groups and accounts have been removed “based on their behavior, not the content they post.”

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.