Facebook said both operations acted “on behalf of a government or foreign actor”
Facebook has removed two separate networks of fake accounts originating in Iran and Russia, for “engaging in foreign or government interference”.
The Russian operation, which Facebook linked to the country’s military intelligence services, focused primarily on Ukraine and neighbouring countries.
The small Iranian operation used accounts and personas on Facebook and Instagram to post content about US politics and the 2020 presidential election.
Both operations attempted to directly contact politicians, public figures and journalists, a tactic used by several other information operations in the past.
Nathaniel Gleicher, head of Facebook’s security policy, said in a blog post that both operations were removed for violating the company’s “coordinated inauthentic behaviour” policy, not their content.
The social network defines the policy as “when groups of pages or people work together to mislead others about who they are or what they are doing”.
The Russian network used dozens of fake personas to post pro-Kremlin and anti-Western messages on Facebook,