Facebook, Twitter dismantle the global array of disinformation networks

In separate statements, the two companies claimed to have identified and suspended more than 1,000 accounts between them, which used false identities and other deceptive behavior to disseminate false or misleading information.

The networks announced on Thursday targeted users in a wide range of countries, including the United States, Saudi Arabia, Cuba, Thailand, Myanmar, Nigeria, the Philippines and Azerbaijan.

Facebook said the people responsible for the extensive disinformation activity were often associated with political groups that targeted national audiences.

Twitter said the five networks it had suspended were linked separately to groups with ties to the governments of Iran, Saudi Arabia, Cuba, Thailand and Russia.

After being criticized for failing to stop alleged Russian attempts to influence the 2016 U.S. election, Facebook and Twitter announced a series of high-profile removals in the weeks leading up to this year’s presidential vote.

In multiple cases, social media companies have partnered with US law enforcement agencies to monitor and dismantle campaigns of political influence targeting US voters that have been blamed on foreign states, most notably Iran and Russia.

Tehran and Moscow have repeatedly denied the allegations.

(Reporting by Jack Stubbs in London and Christopher Bing in Washington; Editing by David Gregorio)

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