Facebook blocks 115 suspicious accounts linked to "foreign entities" amidst US midterm elections

Facebook blocks 115 suspicious accounts linked to "foreign entities" amidst US midterm elections

Facebook has blocked 115 suspicious accounts from its social network and photo-sharing app Instagram just as the US midterm elections take place.

A blog post entitled ‘Election Update’ from the company’s head of cybersecurity policy Nathaniel Gleicher said the firm is in “regular contact with law enforcement, outside experts and other companies around the world”.

On Sunday evening, shortly before today’s US midterms, US law enforcement was said to have contacted Facebook about suspicious online activity that they claimed may be linked to “foreign entities”.

“So far” an early stage investigation found that 30 Facebook accounts and 85 Instagram accounts may be linked with such activity.

The social networking giant said the accounts were immediately blocked while investigations take place. It did not rule out further accounts coming under the microscope.

Investigations continue

“Almost all the Facebook Pages associated with these accounts appear to be in the French or Russian languages, while the Instagram accounts seem to have mostly been in English - some were focused on celebrities, others political debate,” said Gleicher .

“Typically, we would be further along with our analysis before announcing anything publicly. But given that we are only one day away from important elections in the US, we wanted to let people know about the action we’ve taken and the facts as we know them today.

“Once we know more - including whether these accounts are linked to the Russia-based Internet Research Agency or other foreign entities - we will update this post.”

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Craig Chapple is a freelance analyst, consultant and writer with specialist knowledge of the games industry. He has previously served as Senior Editor at, as well as holding roles at Sensor Tower, Nintendo and Develop.