Twitter on Friday announced that, it has closed down thousands of accounts across the world for spreading fake news as well as pro-government propaganda. These fake accounts originates from places like the United Arab Emirates, China and Spain.
China (PRC)/Hong Kong
Accounts coming from China seeking to sow discord among protesters in Hong Kong were closed down, as were accounts amplifying a pro-Saudi message coming from Egypt and the United Arab Emirates directed at Qatar and Yemen.
Twitter identify more than 200,000 fake accounts based in the PRC which were attempting to sow discord about the protest movement in Hong Kong.
The information release is part of the company’s push to improve understanding of how its platform is used by state actors to manipulate public opinion.
They had identified 4,302 accounts based in China “attempting to sow discord about the protest movement in Hong Kong.”
United Arab Emirates & Egypt
Twitter said, “We have removed a network of 271 accounts originating in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Egypt. These accounts were interconnected in their goals and tactics: a multi-faceted information operation primarily targeting Qatar, and other countries such as Iran. It also amplified messaging supportive of the Saudi government.”
Twitter has removed 259 accounts as they identified them as falsely boosting public sentiment online in Spain. Operated by Partido Popular, these accounts were active for a relatively short period, and consisted primarily of fake accounts engaging in spamming or retweet behaviour to increase engagement.