Facebook said Tuesday it had removed hundreds of fake accounts linked to the US-backed terrorist group of Mujahideen-e Khalq (MEK) and a troll farm in Albania.

Iran Press/America: The accounts posted content critical of Iran’s government and supportive of MEK. In many cases, the Facebook and Instagram accounts used fake profile names and photos, according to globalnews.ca.

Facebook determined the accounts were being run from a single location in Albania by a group of individuals working on behalf of MEK. Facebook found other telltale clues suggesting a so-called troll farm, in which workers are paid to post content, often misinformation, to social media.

For one, researchers found that the activity seemed to follow the central European workday, with posts picking up after 9 a.m., slowing down at the end of the day, and with a noticeable pause at lunch time.

“Even trolls need to eat,” Ben Nimmo, who leads Facebook’s global threat intelligence operation, told reporters on a conference call Tuesday.

MEK, said in a statement that no accounts affiliated with it have been removed. The group also denied the existence of an Albanian troll farm affiliated with MEK.

The network of fake accounts was most active in 2017 and again in late 2020, Facebook said. In all, more than 300 accounts, pages and groups on Facebook and Instagram were removed as part of the company’s action. Around 112,000 people followed one or more of the Instagram accounts.

In some cases, the fake accounts used photos of Iranian celebrities. A small number of the more recent Instagram accounts appear to have used profile pictures that were computer generated.

The MEK has carried out numerous terrorist attacks against Iranian civilians and government officials since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979. Out of the nearly 17,000 Iranians killed in terrorist attacks over the past four decades, about 12,000 have fallen victim to MEK's acts of terror.

Washington and the European Union have removed the MEK from their lists of terrorist organizations. The anti-Iran terrorists enjoy the freedom of activity in the US and Europe and even hold meetings with American and EU officials.


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