Facebook had over 2 billion fake accounts removed from its network during the first quarter of this year, a figure that’s almost twice the number it removed in the previous quarter. According to our sources who spoke with the company’s management, the reason there was an up in the number of fake accounts is because of the rise in automatic attacks which in-turn created multiple accounts.
On Thursday last week, the company made public its recent iteration of Community Standards Report with the aim to aid the general masses get a grip of how it handles the moderation of content. This is among the many attempts the company is making to be as transparent as possible and improve public view after the series of scandals the company has faced such as Cambridge Analytica, Russian interference in the 2016 election of the United States and the role the platform played in the spread of wrong information. It is also important to note that Facebook has since these scandals been under heavy examination by politicians especially who have demanded that Facebook be broken up.
In the fourth quarter of last year, Facebook reported that it removed a total of 1.2 billion fake accounts from its platform and 750,000 in the previous before. However, in the first quarter of the same 2018, the number of fake accounts that Facebook took down were not up to 600,000.
The company also stressed that most of the fake accounts that it is handling have been taken down within a few minutes after they were created and such accounts were not included in their metrics report especially accounts that only stayed active for a few months. Facebook claims that it addresses 99.8% of fake accounts on its own even before there are reports of fake accounts.
Facebook stated that the automatic attacks that create so many accounts have been on the increase and because the accounts that are created are much, and as they are numerous in number, some of them tend to slip by the detection system. On the matter, Guy Rosen, the Vice President of Integrity at the company stated that Facebook has now opted to blocking a certain range of IP addresses so as to prevent spammers from gaining access to its systems.
The Vice President of Analytics at Facebook, Alex Schultz, wrote in a post that, “When it comes to abusive fake accounts, our intent is simple: find and remove as many as we can while removing as few authentic accounts as possible.” Facebook rounded up by saying it’s doing all it can to remove as many fake accounts as possible.