Facebook Monday announced that it had removed several fake pages, accounts and groups from a disinformation campaign against Ukraine. It also warned about hackers’ increased targeting of Ukrainian public officials as part of the Russian invasion.
Here are some key facts
In a statement, the company said in the previous 48 hours it had discovered a “relatively small network” of around 40 accounts, pages and groups on Facebook and Instagram based in Russia and Ukraine which were violating its policy against “coordinated inauthentic behavior.”
These fake accounts masqueraded as websites and created false identities with profile photos generated by artificial intelligence. The fake accounts could be found on many platforms such as Twitter, Telegram, YouTube and Russian social networks Odnoklassniki or VK.
They posed as engineers and scientists, news editors and journalists and operated websites that published claims about Ukraine being betrayed by the West, and Ukraine being an insolvent state.
Facebook also warned that it was seeing increased targeting of Ukrainians including public and military figures by the hacker group Ghostwriter using fraudulent emails to gain access to a user’s social media accounts.
It was discovered by the company that Facebook had been hacked and used it to upload YouTube videos showing Ukrainian troops giving up to Russia.
Facebook urges all its Russian and Ukrainian users to take extra precautions to protect their accounts online and from hackers.
It is still a story in progress.