Global News

Facebook, Google, Twitter invited to testify in Russian Federation probe

Facebook, Google, Twitter invited to testify in Russian Federation probe

Twitter's presentation on Capitol Hill drew sharp criticism from Senator Mark Warner, the Democratic vice-chairman of the Senate intelligence committee, who accused the social media company of not being aggressive enough in probing Russian interference in the election.

Three of the accounts were from the Russian government-backed news site RT, which spent $274,100 in ads on Twitter during the 2016 presidential campaign, The Washington Post reports.

Twitter, like Facebook, is being examined for its part in spreading content created or paid for by Russian state-sponsored entities with the desire to influence US politics.

According to reports, Twitter VP for Public Policy Colin Crowell met with members of both the Senate and House Select Committees on Intelligence to discuss Russian involvement in the 2016 election.

Twitter has not made details about the accounts public. "In that year, the three RT accounts promoted 1,823 tweets that definitely or potentially targeted the USA market", Twitter said.

None of these accounts had been registered as advertisers, and all of them had already been or were immediately suspended, most for violating spam rules.

Twitter said some of the ads, or promoted tweets, aimed to deceive voters by telling them they could "text to vote", which has no basis in fact.

Sensex, Nifty end flat in cautious trade ahead of Fed's outcome
In terms of the broader markets, the S&P BSE mid-cap index was lower by 0.07 per cent and the small-cap index by 0.14 per cent. Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) remained passive as they sold shares worth a net Rs 1,719.62 crore.


"We know there is a huge appetite for more transparency into how Twitter fights bots and manipulative networks", the post said. "Twitter is in dialogue with congressional committees with respect to investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 USA election", Twitter said on Friday.

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) wasn't satisfied with Twitter's presentation Thursday, calling it "frankly inadequate on nearly every level".

Twitter found an additional 179 accounts connected to those 22. Twitter provided the ads to investigators during closed-door meetings Thursday with the staff of the Senate and House intelligence committees.

Twitter is taking a hint from Facebook and handing over information to Congress about accounts that may have been used for malicious purposes or for misinformation around the 2016 Presidential elections.

Meanwhile, Twitter on Friday said that Russia-linked accounts did try to use Twitter to influence the U.S. presidential elections past year.

Twitter, Facebook and Google haven't yet said whether they will accept the invitations to testify publicly before both intelligence committees, according to ABC News.

Moscow denies any such activity and Mr Trump has denied any talk of collusion.


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