Disinformation for hire: PR firms are the new battleground for Facebook

ZDNet 

Facebook global head of security policy Nathaniel Gleicher has detailed the new disinformation paradigm his platform is battling, with an influx of adversaries using public relations or marketing firms to do their bidding. Gleicher told the Select Committee on Foreign Interference Through Social Media that, last October, Facebook removed a network that was linked to marketing firms based in the UAE, Nigeria, and Egypt. The network targeted public debate around the world, primarily in the Middle East and Africa, but with some focus in Australia. "[There is] an increasing use of marketing firms or PR agencies that are essentially running disinfo-for-hire businesses: You hire them and they run your disinformation campaign," he said on Friday morning. "We've seen these around the world, we've seen a couple of them as far back as 2018 … but we've seen more use of them lately."

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