Facebook, Instagram say removed hundreds of fake pro-govt accounts from Malaysia, alleges link to police

·1-min read
Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 5 -- Meta, the parent company behind Facebook and Instagram, said in a recent report it had identified and removed over 600 accounts across all its social network platforms for violating the policy against "coordinated inauthentic behavior", with most of them alleged to be part of a "troll farm" to corrupt or manipulate public discourse using fake accounts.

Meta claimed in its Quarterly Adversarial Threat report released yesterday this network of fake accounts posted memes in the Malay language in support of the current government coalition and attempting to paint its critics as corrupt, in addition to promoting police.

"Typically, their posting activity accelerated during weekdays, taking breaks for lunch. Their fake accounts were fairly under-developed and some of them used stolen profile pictures.

"Some of them were detected and disabled by our automated systems," the company said in the report.

To date, it said it has removed 596 Facebook accounts, 180 Pages, 11 Groups and 72 Instagram accounts. Meta said its investigation found that these accounts were linked to the Malaysian police force.

"We found this network after reviewing information about a small portion of this activity initially suspected to have originated in China by researchers at Clemson University. Although the people behind it attempted to conceal their identity and coordination, our investigation found links to the Royal Malaysia Police."

Malay Mail is seeking comments from the police over this accusation.