Twitter removed around 130 Iranian accounts for interference in US Presidential debate

Twitter removed around 130 Iranian accounts for attempting to disrupt the public recent US Presidential Debate.

The social media giant Twitter announced to have removed around 130 Iranian Twitter accounts that attempted to disrupt the public conversation during the recent first Presidential Debate for the US 2020 Presidential Election.

The company confirmed that it discovered the activity of the accounts following an alert from the FBI.

According to Twitter, the 130 accounts were quickly removed and appeared to originate in Iran.

The company added that the removed accounts had a very low engagement, this means that their potential impact on the public conversation was limited.

In line with its principles of transparency and to improve public understanding of inauthentic influence campaigns, Twitter will publish details of this operation in its

Twitter said it plans to publish details about the removed accounts and their tweets on its Transparency portal‘s section related to information operations carried out by nation-state actors.

In September, the social network announced new measures to protect high-profile accounts during the upcoming US Presidential election.

The types of accounts that are in this designated group are:

  • US Executive Branch and Congress
  • US Governors and Secretaries of State
  • Presidential campaigns, political parties and candidates with Twitter Election Labels running for US House, US Senate, or Governor
  • Major US news outlets and political journalists

Twitter will use an internal notification service to alert owners of accounts associated with people in the above group.

The company also started using warning labels on several tweets considered as misleading messages because they were providing inaccurate information about voting and the electoral process.

Early September, Facebook and Twitter removed social media accounts for a news organization named PeaceData, which used as part of Russia’s state propaganda system.

Pierluigi Paganini

October 2, 2020

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