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Facebook removed Znaj.ua, Hyser and Politeka pages due fake news

17.09.2019, 14:32

Facebook has suspended some Ukraine accounts and groups which have coordinated misinformation campaigns. Deleted pages included accounts of Hyser, Znaj.ua, Politeka editions, which FB pages are now unavailable, as Liga.Tech reported with reference to the head of cybersecurity policy of a social network Nathaniel Gleykher.

The experts revealed a large campaign based on behavioral analysis of suspects, not content content.

According to Gleykher, the investigation established that the accounts were linked to the Ukrainian PR agency Pragmatico. “I think they are based in Kyiv. But I would double-check this fact, ” he said.

In total, Facebook deleted 168 accounts, 149 pages and 79 groups. They had a combined total of about 4.2 million followers. Approximately 400,000 accounts have joined the groups. Pages and groups were managed by fake accounts, and names kept changing.

Gleykher estimated the budget spent by the PR agency for advertising on Facebook and Instagram at about $ 1.6 million.

He adds that the PR company did not work for any particular politician or business. Rather, the company would work with various clients, and promoted topics such as sports, celebrities, showbiz, politics and economics.

Gleykher stressed that the Ukrainian campaign had no connection with the outside world and was not part of the information war launched by Russia. Although previously, some hostile groups coordinated by Ukraine’s eastern neighbor had been removed.

We remind, that the Institute of Mass Information and the Texts Project analyzed the news lines of the top 50 Ukrainian information sites and published anti-rating. Kp.ru, from-ua, znaj.ua, Politika, "Stran.ua", "Vesti.ru", "Apostrophe", "Komsomolskaya Pravda in Ukraine", "Telegraph" and "Lenta.ru got to the top ten of anti-rating.

Six criteria for untrue news served as basis for this analysis: unreliable source of information, non-credible news, manipulative headline, a fake, manipulation of emotions, and hate speech.

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