FILE PHOTO: Silhouettes of laptop users are seen next to a screen projection of Facebook logo in this picture illustration taken March 28, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration
(Reuters) – Facebook Inc said on Thursday it had removed 137 pages, groups and Instagram accounts in the United Kingdom and a further 31 in Romania for engaging in coordinated inauthentic behavior.
The individuals behind these accounts represented themselves as far-right and anti-far-right activists and operated fake accounts to engage in hate speech and spread divisive comments on both sides of the political debate in the UK, Nathaniel Gleicher, head of Facebook’s cybersecurity policy wrote in a blog post.
They frequently posted about local and political news including topics like immigration, free speech, racism, LGBT issues, far-right politics, issues between India and Pakistan, and religious beliefs including Islam and Christianity.
About 175,000 accounts followed one or more of these pages, and around 4,500 accounts followed one or more of these Instagram accounts.
Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Bengaluru; editing by Patrick Graham