Twitter Encounters Fake Accounts More Than Last Year

Twitter Encounters Fake Accounts More Than Last Year

July 7, 2018 0 By Mr Kings

Twitter has aggressively suspended many accounts in a fight to minimize the spread of dis-information running rampant on its platform.

According to information from Washington, Twitter suspended up to 70 million accounts between May and June of this year, with no signs of slowing down in July. According to data obtained from the source, the platform suspended 13 million accounts during a weeklong spike of bot banning activity in mid-May.

Report from the post tells that the uptick in suspensions is tied to the company’s efforts to comply with scrutiny from the congressional investigation into Russian dis-information on social platforms. The report noted that Twitter investigates bots and other fake accounts through an internal project known as “Operation Megaphone” through which it buys suspicious accounts and then investigates their connections.

Twitter declined to provide additional information about The Washington Post report, but pointed us to a blog post from last week in which it disclosed other numbers related to its bot-hunting efforts. In May of 2018, Twitter identified more than 9.9 million suspicious accounts — triple its efforts in late 2017.

Twitter suspended over 9.9 million accounts

When Twitter identifies that an account seems suspicious, it then blocks that account, requiring the Twitter users to prove their authenticity by confirming a phone number. When an account fails this test it gets the boot, while accounts that pass are reinstalled.

As Twitter noted in its recent blog post, bots can make users look good by artificially inflating follower counts.

“As a result of these improvements, some people may notice their own account metrics change more regularly,” Twitter warned. The company noted that cracking down on fake accounts means that “malicious actors” won’t be able to promote their own content and accounts as easily by inflating their own numbers. Kicking users off a platform, fake or not, is a risk for a company that regularly reports its monthly active users, though only a temporary one.

As the report notes, at least one insider expects Twitter’s Q2 active user numbers to dip, reflecting its shift in enforcement. Still, any temporary user number setback would prove nominal for a platform that should focus on healthy user growth.