Reddit removed a ‘few hundred accounts’ linked to Russian propaganda
Reddit said Monday they had removed “a few hundred accounts” linked to Russian propaganda.
Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, writing under the username spez, said the site removed accounts that they “suspect are of Russian origin or content linking directly to known propaganda domains.”
“We have found and removed a few hundred accounts, and of course, every account we find expands our search a little more,” Huffman wrote. “The vast majority of suspicious accounts we have found in the past months were banned back in 2015–2016 through our enhanced efforts to prevent abuse of the site generally.”
Huffman also said the site hasn’t seen many ads from Russia “either before or after the 2016 election” and that ads from Russia are currently banned from the site.
The CEO did concede that propaganda was shared indirectly using the platform, citing users who were sharing content that was later revealed to be from Russian agents but did not know that at the time.
“I believe the biggest risk we face as Americans is our own ability to discern reality from nonsense, and this is a burden we all bear,” Huffman wrote.
The revelation comes after The Daily Beast reported that it had obtained leaked files from a prominent Russian “troll farm” about its efforts on Reddit.
Content from sites backed by the troll farm — the Internet Research Agency — were often upvoted on subreddits like r/The_Donald and r/HillaryForPrison leading up to the 2016 election, according to The Daily Beast.
Reddit did not initially comment to The Daily Beast on their report.
Reddit’s announcement comes as social media platforms are under scrutiny for their role in Russia’s election interference.
Special counsel Robert Mueller charged 13 Russians and three Russian entities last month for interfering in the U.S. election. Those charged were linked to the Internet Research Agency.