Facebook deletes suspicious accounts from both India and Pakistan

Date Published: April 8, 2019 Last Updated: April 8, 2019

Facebook has deleted major accounts linked with both India and Pakistan which were engaged in "co-ordinated inauthentic behaviour and spam." A lot of such pages were operated by corporates, political organizations, and government agencies. Most of these pages had as many as one million followers, and users managing these pages bought Facebook ads to boost traffics. Pages linked to the Instagram account were also deleted by Facebook. However, not all of these pages were run by BJP or Congress

  • Facebook has announced that it has deleted major pages based in both India and Pakistan which are run by corporates, political organizations and government agencies over the grounds of "co-ordinated inauthentic behaviour or spam."
  • Nathaniel Gleicher, Facebook's Head of Cybersecurity Policy said in a company press release, “We have removed Pages, Groups, and accounts for violating Facebook’s policies on coordinated inauthentic behavior or spam." He further added, “Today’s action includes four separate takedowns—each distinct and unconnected.”

  • Many of the accounts which were removed by Facebook were also based in Pakistan. They were operated by members of the Inter-Services Public Relations, an organisation within Pakistan’s military. These pages and groups posted content related to the Pakistani military, the Kashmir community, and general Pakistani news. Some of the content posted was also critical of Indian political leaders and the Indian armed forces.

  • Facebook investigators had also discovered many pages which were managed by the Indian National Congress. According to Facebook, the Indian-based pages frequently posted content which the company’s algorithms identified as “spam.” The pages were also critical of some of the INC’s political enemies like the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), according to a report from Reuters.

  • “The fact that partisans on both sides resorted to such tactics is a troubling feature,” said a spokesperson from the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab.