Facebook said it disrupted an international fake account operation that was firing off inauthentic “likes” and bogus comments to win friends it would then pound with spam.
Facebook’s security team spent six months fighting to neutralise what they saw as a coordinated campaign, according to Shabnam Shaik, a company security manager.
The ring used accounts in a number of countries, including Bangladesh, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia.
The group tried to mask its activities with such tactics as connecting with the social network through “proxy” servers to disguise where “likes,” posts or other communications were originating, according to Shaik.
Facebook said the campaign aimed to trick people into connecting as friends they would later target with spam. The company said it had derailed the operation early enough to spare users that fate.
The leading social network this week said it has started weeding out bogus accounts by watching for suspicious behaviour, such as repetitive posts or torrents of messages.