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Facebook removed network that used platform’s tools to get rid of anti-Islam, anti-Pak content

Facebook has removed a network of over 700 accounts, pages, and groups, including Instagram accounts from Pakistan that leveraged Facebook's own reporting tools to get anti-Islamic and content critical of the Pakistani government removed. Alongside, the network also posted content critical of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Indian Army, and about how Modi has handled the coronavirus pandemic. Facebook said the posts were in Urdu, Hindi, English, and Punjabi and seems to have primarily targeted Pakistanis and Indians. The network was engaging in "coordinated inauthentic behaviour", which Facebook has been investigating for a few years now. Chrome extension used to speed up mass reporting of anti-Islamic, anti-Pak content Troll armies on these networks pushed content on groups and pages encouraging users to report up to 80 profiles at a time, "with tips on how to do this quickly, and direct links to the reporting sites". One of the groups said their aim was “complete elimination of all blasphemous prophets, saints, companions, and other enemies of Islam". These observations were made by the Stanford Internet Observatory, which studied the activity of over 370 of the removed accounts, pages, and groups. Facebook gave the Observatory access to 283 profiles and 96 Instagram accounts. Another group encouraged users to post links of "any anti-Islam or anti-Pakistan" page, groups, or accounts, per the Observatory. The admins of the groups would then greenlight the posts and proceed to get them mass reported and taken down. The network encouraged people to use fake accounts…

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