Twitter has released some new data coming from its investigation of Russian intervention in the 2016 US presidential elections. The company said that 677,775 users were exposed to tweets pertaining to Russian propaganda. The posts came from over 50,000 bot accounts on the platform, and many of these have been linked to the Internet Research Agency, an organisation with known ties to Russia.
“Consistent with our commitment to transparency, we are emailing notifications to 677,775 people in the United States who followed one of these accounts or retweeted or liked a Tweet from these accounts during the election period. Because we have already suspended these accounts, the relevant content on Twitter is no longer publicly available,” the company wrote in an announcement. Here are some photos Twitter shared, as examples of propaganda tweets.
“We have identified an additional 1,062 accounts associated with the IRA. We have suspended all of these accounts for Terms of Service violations, primarily spam, and all but a few accounts, which were restored to legitimate users, remain suspended. At the request of congressional investigators, we are also sharing those account handles with Congress. In total, during the time period we investigated, the 3,814 identified IRA-linked accounts posted 175,993 Tweets, approximately 8.4% of which were election-related,” the company added.
Like Facebook, Twitter also came under fire for failing to prevent Russian intervention in the 2016 elections. The company has since been working to identify and remove accounts that spread Russian propaganda on the platform.