Facebook Says It Sold $100K of Political and Divisive Ads to Russian Company During 2016 Election

Facebook Disinformation
Noah Berger/AP (File)

It is “likely” Russian political operatives spent $100,000 on Facebook ads with “divisive messages” between June 2015 and May 2017, the company said Wednesday.

In a blog post on the issue and the company’s internal investigation, Facebook said the operation involved 3,000 separate ads purchased over a two-year period and appears to have been run out of Russia.

In addition, Facebook found 470 affiliated fake accounts and pages.

About $50,000 of the funds — about 2,200 ads— were potentially related to U.S. politics. The majority of the ads did not reference the U.S. presidential election, voting or a specific candidate.

As CNBC reports, the ads focused on "divisive social and political messages" about hot-button topics including LGBT rights, race, immigration and gun rights. Facebook has shared its findings with U.S. authorities.

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