Dec 2, 2021

Facebook deletes 500 accounts tied to fake Swiss expert

Facebook owner Meta Platforms has removed more than 500 accounts linked to an online disinformation network primarily based in China. The accounts had promoted the claims of a fake Swiss biologist called "Wilson Edwards", who alleged the US was meddling in efforts to find the origins of Covid-19.Edwards' comments had been widely carried by Chinese state media outlets. Earlier in July, an account posing as a Swiss biologist called Wilson Edwards had made statements on Facebook and Twitter that the United States was applying pressure on the World Health Organization scientists who were studying the origins of Covid-19 in an attempt to blame the virus on China. The Swiss embassy said in August that the person likely did not exist, as the Facebook account was opened only two weeks prior to its first post and only had three friends. The persona's original post was initially shared and liked by fake Facebook accounts, and later forwarded by authentic users, most of which belonged to employees of Chinese state infrastructure companies in over 20 countries, Meta said.

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