Facebook had stated that it has removed 687 Facebook pages and accounts linked to an individual associated with the Congress's IT Cell.

Our official pages unaffected Congress on FB removing 687 pages linked to its IT cell
news Social media Monday, April 01, 2019 - 17:38

Hours after Facebook has announced that it has removed 687 Facebook pages and accounts linked to the Congress for violating Facebook’s policies, the Congress tweeted that none of its official pages has been affected.

“This is to clarify no official pages run by INC have been taken down. Additionally, all pages run by our verified volunteers are also unaffected. In the mean time, we are awaiting a response from Facebook to provide us a list of all pages/accounts that they have taken down,” the Congress stated on its official Twitter handle.

In a press release, Facebook announced that it has removed hundreds of pages, groups and accounts for violating Facebook’s policies on ‘coordinated inauthentic behaviour’ or spam. It added that these accounts and pages were taken down based on their behaviour, not the content they posted.

The basis of Facebook’s action was that these accounts coordinated with one another and used fake accounts to misrepresent themselves. Facebook said that it has shared relevant information with policymakers and technology platforms.

“We removed 15 Facebook pages, groups and accounts that engaged in coordinated inauthentic behaviour in India and were linked to individuals associated with an Indian IT firm, Silver Touch. We removed 321 Facebook pages and accounts in India that have broken our rules against spam. Unlike the first three actions, this last activity does not represent a single or coordinated operation – instead, these are multiple sets of pages and accounts that behaved similarly and violated our policies,” Facebook said in a statement.

The 687 Facebook Pages and accounts in India comprised 138 pages and 549 Facebook accounts with about 2,06,000 followers following one or more of these pages. These pages and accounts were allegedly using fake accounts and joined various groups to disseminate their content and increase engagement on their own pages. Facebook said that while the people behind this activity attempted to conceal their identities, our review found that it was connected to individuals associated with an INC IT Cell.