Reuters: Facebook says likely Russian-based operation funded U.S. ads with political message


Facebook Inc said on Wednesday it had found that an operation likely based in Russia spent $100,000 on thousands of U.S. ads promoting divisive social and political messages in a two-year-period through May.


Facebook’s disclosure may be the first time a private entity has pointed to receiving Russian money related to U.S. elections, said Brendan Fischer, a program director at the Campaign Legal Center, a Washington nonprofit that advocates for more transparency.

“Whoever may have provided assistance to Russia in buying these Facebook ads is very likely in violation of the law,” he said, adding that Facebook has a legal duty to act if it is aware of similar activity in the future.

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