Social media tech websites Twitter and Facebook have now removed two anti-Ukrainian, what they call “covert influence operations” from their websites. One group seems to be based in Belarus and Russia, as reported by the Silicon Valley Thought Police.
One of the alleged disinto groups was a propaganda campaign pushing anti-Ukraine details. This was reportedly connected to a known Russian disinfo operation. A Facebook spokesman said that the disinfo used AI-generated faces connected to fake reports and news articles in a push to add credibility to the disinfo campaign.
The other disinformation operation supposedly used hacked accounts to push the anti-Ukrainian propaganda and had connections to a known Belarusian hacker group. The groups were removed by both Twitter and Facebook.
Nathaniel Gleicher, who is Facebook’s leader of security policy, said the larger of the campaigns were done from Russia and some areas of Ukraine. The group is now tied to the websites South Front and News Front which the United States government previously said was a part of a broad disinformation campaign by Russia.
Gleicher noted that these propaganda campaigns wanted to “seed stories on the internet that Ukraine is not doing well” by “pretending to be reporters based in Kyiv.” Gleicher said: “The good news is these campaigns have now been very effective, but we do see these people trying to target Ukraine at this time.”
He then said: “These groups are trying to harm the trust in the Ukrainian government, saying that it is a failed state, saying the war is going very badly in Ukraine or attempting to praise Russia.”
Facebook says it has taken down 40 profiles connected to what they call disinformation campaigns, saying they were connected to a larger persona-building operation among Twitter, Telegram, Instagram, and Russian social media networks.
Misinformation is a large part of the continuing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, and many people fall victim to internet memes and hoaxes. Breitbart News recently reported about Rep. Adam Kinzinger believed a popular prank which put conservative comedian Sam Hyde as the jet pilot which people called the “Ghost of Kyiv.”