Twitter’s aggressive drive against fake accounts may hit its growth rate
Twitter took down more than 70 million fake accounts in the months of May and June as part of its drive to clear out bots and trolls on the platform.tech Updated: Jul 07, 2018 11:56 IST
Twitter is aggressively taking down fake accounts in a bid to prevent the spread of misinformation on its platform. The micro-blogging site is suspending more than one million fake and suspicious accounts a day – a move that can severely impact its user base, said a report on Friday.
According to The Washington Post, the rate of account suspensions has more than doubled since October when the micro-blogging platform revealed to US Congress how the Russians used fake accounts to manipulate the 2016 presidential election. More than 70 million accounts were suspended in May and June.
Twitter currently has nearly 330 million monthly active users (MAUs). Removing accounts could lead to a drop in the number of MAUs in the second quarter, claimed the report.
A Twitter representative told CNET that its “ongoing information quality efforts”, along with other factors, were impacting the number of MAUs.
“MAU may continue to be negatively impacted in future periods due to our ongoing information quality efforts, GDPR, and other operational decisions,” the report said quoting Twitter.
The wave of account suspensions by the world’s largest social network is one of several recent campaigns by Twitter to police its platform and stop spam and abuse of fake accounts.
The micro-blogging platform said that in May, its systems identified and challenged more than 9.9 million potentially “spammy” or automated accounts per week -- up from 6.4 million in December and 3.2 million in September 2017. READ: Here’s how Twitter is fighting spam, malicious bots on its platform
“Due to technology and process improvements during the past year, we are now removing 214 per cent more accounts for violating our spam policies on a year-on-year basis,” Twitter informed last week.
Twitter saw a drop in the average number of spam reports -- from an average of approximately 25,000 per day in March, to approximately 17,000 per day in May.
“We’ve also seen a 10 per cent drop in spam reports from search as a result of our recent changes. These decreases in reports received means people are encountering less spam in their timeline, search, and across the Twitter product,” the company said.
“We’re also moving rapidly to curb spam and abuse originating via Twitter’s APIs. In Q1 2018, we suspended more than 142,000 applications in violation of our rules -- collectively responsible for more than 130 million low-quality, spammy tweets,” the company said.
(With inputs from HT Correspondent)
First Published: Jul 07, 2018 11:49 IST