Facebook will combat ‘information ops’ now, using ‘intel agency-level analysis’

Facebook will combat ‘information ops’ now, using ‘intel agency-level analysis’
Image: LU Staff

[Ed. – See if you think Facebook can reliably distinguish between “legitimate activity” and “information operations” based on the criteria cited.  My bet: legitimate activity — when undertaken by right-wing users — will end up being dismissed and suppressed as “information operations.”  Note: the FireEye cyber security firm (see Reuters link) was a CIA-funded start-up, and one of the companies that collaborated with CrowdStrike on supposedly identifying Russia as behind the intrusion attempts on Democratic Party email systems.  That didn’t go so well.]

Facebook said it would go after amplifier accounts based on behavioral analysis that shows signs of inauthenticity, such as sudden bursts of activity or repeated posting of the same material, without regard to the politics of the content.

Facebook said that other amplification techniques it had discovered include coordinated “likes” to boost the prominence of key postings, the creation of groups that camouflage propaganda by including legitimate items, and the spread of inflammatory and racist material.

Most of the false amplification is driven by people with local language skills and a basic knowledge of the relevant political situation, the study said.

Though the goals may often be to promote one cause or candidate or to denigrate another, another objective appears to be sowing distrust and confusion in general, the authors wrote.

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