Facebook Removed 3.2B Fake Accounts Since April

This week, Facebook published the fourth edition of its Community Standards Enforcement Report. It shows that the amount of content violating policies as well as the number of fake accounts created on the social network is only escalating.

As Reuters reports, between and September 2018 Facebook removed 1.55 billion fake accounts. For the same period this year, that total increased to 3.2 billion. Add to that another 2.2 billion fake account removals between January and March, and you can clearly see the scale of the problem for Facebook.

Facebook uses a set of community standards to outline what is and is not allowed on the social network. The report focuses on ten policy areas including Adult Nudity and Sexual Activity, Bullying and Harassment, Child Nudity and Sexual Exploitation of Children, Fake Accounts, Hate Speech, Regulated Goods: Drugs and Firearms, Spam, Terrorist Propaganda, Violent and Graphic Content, and Suicide and Self-Injury. Instagram is also covered using four of the Facebook policies listed above.

During the third quarter, 11.6 million pieces of content depicting child nudity and sexual exploitation were removed from Facebook and 754,000 from Instagram. 2.5 million posts about suicide or self-injury were removed, as were 4.4 million posts about drug sales and 2.3 million about firearm sales. On terrorist propaganda, Facebook says its proactive detection rate for content from al-Qaeda, ISIS and their affiliates is above 99 percent. For all terrorist organizations, the rate is above 98 percent.

In a separate post, Chris Sonderby, VP & Deputy General Counsel at Facebook, explained how government requests for data increased by 16 percent in the first half of 2019. 128,617 requests were received in total, with 66 percent of those coming from the US, an increase of 23 percent compared to the previous six months. He also focused in on the number of deliberate internet disruptions caused by governments, with the total being 67 disruptions to Facebook spread across 15 countries. That’s up from 53 disruptions during the second half of 2018.

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As a way of helping to educate users, Facebook also published a new enforcement page that shows multiple examples of “how our Community Standards apply to different types of content and see where we draw the line.”

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