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Facebook Deletes 500 Million Fake Accounts In Effort To Clean Up Network

Facebook Deletes 500 Million Fake Accounts In Effort To Clean Up Network

The company also enforced its guidelines on 21 million pieces of nudity and sexual activity, 1.9 million pieces of terrorist propaganda, 2.5 million hate speech examples, and 3.5 million posts with violent content. Facebook's automated systems spotted nearly 100 percent of spam and terrorist propaganda while 99 percent of fake accounts were also spotted by them.

The company did not explain the jump in such posts, but Alex Schultz, its vice president of data analytics, said releasing the data is a part of an attempt to work with the community to improve Facebook. "However, we don't have a sense of how many incorrect takedowns happen - how many appeals that result in content being restored". Its systems spotted almost 100 percent of spam and terrorist propaganda, almost 99 percent of fake accounts and around 96 percent of posts with adult nudity and sexual activity.

This led to old as well as new content of this type being taken down.

In an unprecedented report responding to calls for transparency after the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal, Facebook detailed its actions against such content in line with its "community standards". The company said the report has data on "how much content people saw that violates our standards; how much content we removed; and how much content we detected proactively using our technology - before people who use Facebook reported it". "This is especially true where we've been able to build artificial intelligence technology that automatically identifies content that might violate our standards". Facebook said the number tends to fluctuate from quarter to quarter.

Facebook says AI has played an increasing role in flagging this content.

Graphic violence: During Q1, Facebook took action against 3.4 million pieces of content for graphic violence, up 183% from 1.2 million during Q4.

The posts that keep the Facebook reviewers the busiest are those showing adult nudity or sexual activity - quite apart from child pornography, which is not covered by the report.

Asked if there is a need for a dedicated review team based here to understand local languages such as Singlish, the executive said there are no plans to do so but there are already reviewers within the team capable of understanding these languages. While the company still asks people to report offensive content, it has increasingly used AI to weed out offensive posts before anyone sees them.

The social network says when action is taken on flagged content it does not necessarily mean it has been taken down.

All in all the company removed 583 million fake accounts, although these were not all active at the same time. For graphic violence, Facebook's technology accounted for 86 percent of the reports. Tuesday's report, which will come out twice a year, can also show how well Facebook's artificial intelligence systems learn to flag items that violate the rules before anyone on the site can see them. The company has pledged in recent months to use facial recognition technology - which it also uses to suggest which Facebook friends to tag in photos - to catch fake accounts that might be using another person's photo in their profile pictures.

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