Google, Facebook, and Twitter are Deleting Accounts Linked to Iran
Some of America’s largest tech companies are zeroing in on Iran and clearing out their online networks of fake accounts, videos, and social media posts. Google, Facebook, and Twitter specifically are raising their efforts focused on the cyber mischief involving spreading misinformation. Facebook and Google found these malicious accounts by collaborating with FireEye, a security company.
These mega platforms are removing any accounts linked to an Iranian “influence operation.” Facebook and Twitter announced that they are levering their platforms to remove content. Google is now doing the same on several sites.
Google removed content from YouTube, Blogger, and Google+ amongst others, but the numbers hardly compare to the number of accounts that Facebook and Twitter removed. However, people do not use Google’s services as much as Facebook and Twitter combined. Still, Google removed 39 channels, including relevant videos with tens of thousands of views from YouTube, six blogs from Blogger and 13 accounts on Google+ social network. Facebook pulled 652 accounts from its platform and Instagram. Twitter deleted 248 accounts.
Facebook, Google, and FireEye all agree that the signs point to this “influence operation” being a way to try and sway Western political opinions in Iran’s favor. They also warn that in addition to Iran, Russia is actively creating and using fake accounts.