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Facebook says it took down another 3 billion fake accounts

Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook's annual F8 developer conference in 2015. (Facebook/Released)

This article was originally published by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and is reprinted with permission.

Facebook says the number of fake accounts it removed from October to March doubled from the previous six-month period to more than 3 billion.

In an announcement posted on its corporate website on May 23, the world’s largest social-media company said that a large number of the fake accounts were disabled “within minutes” and before they became “active.”

“The amount of accounts we took action on increased due to automated attacks by bad actors who attempt to create large volumes of accounts at one time,” Facebook said, noting that around 5 percent of its 2.4 billion monthly active users were fake.

“We disabled 1.2 billion accounts in the fourth quarter of 2018 and 2.19 billion in the first quarter of 2019. We’ll continue to find more ways to counter attempts to violate our policies,” the California-based company said.

Facebook added that it was making progress in combatting hate speech by removing 65 percent of such content through automated systems instead of waiting for user reports before taking action.

Facebook said it took down 4 million posts considered hate speech in the first three months of 2019, and it pledged to continue to develop detection systems to cut down on such posts in various languages and regions.