Russian Federation used Google ads to advertise during USA election

Russian-bought ads on Google platforms aimed to sway 2016 US election: report

Russian-bought ads on Google platforms aimed to sway 2016 US election: report

INTERNET OVERLORD Google claims to have uncovered Trump ads on its platform that were bought by Russian accounts, suggesting attempts to interfere in the 2016 USA presidential election. People familiar with the company's investigation say tens of thousands of dollars were spent on ads across many Google products including YouTube, Google Search, Gmail, and DoubleClick.

Facebook recently shared 3,000 ads purchased by Russian operatives with Congress after finding that they were part of a disinformation campaign during the 2016 presidential election.

Just as Russian elements spent a fortune buying Facebook ads, it would seem that Vladimir Putin's gang also did the same with Google ads.

Its decision to look into matters comes as other tech giants-Facebook and Twitter-reportedly prepare to appear before US lawmakers to testify as part of a probe into Russian interference during the election.

Google has uncovered less than US$100,000 (RM422,345) in ad spending potentially linked to Russian actors, the source said. YouTube, which Google owns, is the largest online video service in the world.

It is the latest technology giant to face scrutiny over the role it played in enabling Russian interference in the election.

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The ads on Google were not from the Kremlin-linked group that bought ads on Facebook, according to a report in the Washington Post.

Last month, Google spokesman Andrea Faville told The Washington Post that the company is "always monitoring for abuse or violations of our policies and we've seen no evidence this type of ad campaign was run on our platforms". Kremlin-backed trolls were already spreading misinformation via social media platforms.

Google's admission comes just a week after Facebook, the world's largest social network, revealed that a Russian internet agency a year ago purchased around 3,000 targeted advertisements aimed at influencing the presidential election, which saw Republican Donald Trump defeat his Democratic rival Hilary Clinton. Google has not said whether it will accept a similar invitation to do so.

Google has said it found evidence that Russian operatives exploited its platforms to spread disinformation.

A study published on Monday by researchers with the Oxford Internet Institute, which is affiliated with the British university, found that current USA military personnel and veterans were targeted by disinformation campaigns on Twitter and Facebook over the past year by a nexus of pro-Kremlin, Russian-oriented sites, along with conspiracy theorists and European right-wing ideologues.

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