Facebook has removed hundreds of accounts that were operating under a mysterious advertising agency in Russia that attempted to pay social media influences to smear the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines.
The network, which includes 65 Facebook accounts and 243 Instagram accounts, was traced back to an advertising and marketing firm called Fazze, which was working in Russia on behalf of an unknown client.
Many claims were made by users on the network in regards to the safety of the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines.
Social media users in India, Latin America and parts of the United States were targeted.
The motivations behind the campaign have not been speculated by Facebook representatives.
The network also targeted social media influencers in several countries and offered to pay them for reposting the content.
The network’s offer was exposed by influencers in Germany and France.
Although the campaign’s reach wasn’t impressive, Facebook’s Head of Security Policy Nathaniel Gleicher stated that it’s noteworthy because of its efforts to involve social media influencers, while adding, “Although it was sloppy and didn’t have very good reach, it was an elaborate setup,”.
According to Facebook investigators, some influencers did post the material but later deleted it when stories emerged about Fazze.