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Twitter now believes those 14 accounts should not be included based on improved methodology, improved understanding of IRA characteristics, and other new information – including the possibility that some are authentic user accounts that had become compromised.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union large numbers of eastern European women have advertised themselves in such a way, primarily from Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Moldova. The House Intelligence Committee Minority has worked to expose the Kremlin’s exploitation of social media networks since the ICA was first published, highlighting this issue for the American public during an open hearing with social media companies in November 2017. Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency.” The ICA also assesses that: “Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump.” Putin and the Russian government, the ICA explained: “[A]spired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible by discrediting Secretary Clinton and publicly contrasting her unfavorably to him.” The tools to carry out this covert operation were multifaceted, according to the Assessment: “Moscow’s influence campaign followed a Russian messaging strategy that blends covert intelligence operations—such as cyber activity—with overt efforts by Russian Government agencies, state-funded media, third-party intermediaries, and paid social media users or “trolls.” As explained in our Minority Views, the House Intelligence Committee Minority affirmed the ICA’s findings following a review of extensive classified and unclassified evidence in the course of the investigation, including significant information discovered since the release of the ICA in January 2017.The data made available today does not include the 80,000 pieces of organic content shared on Facebook by the IRA.We expect to make this content public in the future. During the Committee’s November 2017 open hearing, the Minority introduced into the record 2,752 Twitter accounts that Twitter identified as connected to the Internet Research Agency (IRA), the Kremlin-linked “troll farm.” These accounts were designed to impersonate U. news entities, political parties, and groups focused on social and political issues.