Facebook, Google, Twitter testify before US lawmakers in Russia probe

ANI | Updated: Nov 01, 2017 02:00 IST

Washington D. C. [United States], November 1 (ANI): Facebook, Google and Twitter are testifying in Washington D.C. about the Russian efforts to influence the 2016 United States presidential election campaign by spreading misinformation online.

According to The Washington Post, the hearing by a Senate judiciary subcommittee comes after the prepared testimonies of Facebook and Twitter revealed that, unknown to them, Russian-backed accounts used their respective sites to share and promote content aimed at causing political unrest.

On Facebook, as many as 126 million people may have seen content from accounts tied to Russian sources.

Twitter said it had discovered that 2,752 accounts controlled by Russians and more than 36,000 Russian bots tweeted 1.4 million times during the election.

Google disclosed that it had found 1,108 videos with 43?hours of content related to the Russian effort on YouTube. It also found USD 4,700 worth of Russian search and display ads.

Now, the Congress is trying to find out the impact of those misinformation campaigns on the last year presidential polls, in which U.S. President Donald Trump surprisingly beat Hillary Clinton.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) started the hearing by describing it as a national security challenge.

"This is the national security challenge of the 21st Century," Graham said.

It'll be a two-day marathon hearing with the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on crime and terrorism. (ANI)

Earlier on Monday, all three companies announced that the number of Russian-linked accounts on their sites were higher than previously disclosed. (ANI)