Congress Grills Tech Firms Over Russia’s 2016 Reach

Social media execs testifying before Congress.

Top social media companies revealed more details about how Russian operatives made extensive use of their platforms to wage a disinformation and influence campaign targeting the 2016 presidential election as senators on Tuesday called the threat a critical national security issue and questioned the ability of tech companies to combat it.

In the first of three hearings before Congress this week, senators grilled lawyers from Twitter, Facebook and Google about the ways Russian-linked accounts sought to sow discord and exploit societal divisions in the United States online. These Russian-associated operatives used “fake news” posts, social media manipulation and amplification through bots, and targeted advertising.

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