Facebook exposes a Chinese network behind fake experts
Facebook exposes a Chinese network behind fake experts

Swiss biologist Wilson Edwards said on Facebook and Twitter on July 24 that the United States is interfering with efforts to find the origin of the coronavirus and is pressing WHO scientists investigating the virus's origin to blame China.

His allegations spread quickly on social media. Edwards' remarks were widely reported in Chinese state media. She quotes a so-called biologist on her Facebook account.

Within a week, two state media outlets in China, the Global Times and the People's Daily, condemned Wilson Edwards' allegations as intimidation by the United States.

Wilson Edwards created his Facebook account two days after China refused to accept the World Health Organization's plan for a second phase of research into the origin of the coronavirus.

According to the Swiss Embassy in Beijing, it turned out that there is no Swiss named Wilson Edwards. On August 10, the embassy official Weibo said, if you are around, we would like to see you. But this may be fake news. We urge Chinese media and netizens to remove these posts.

On the same day, the Swiss embassy tweeted, and Facebook checked and deleted Wilson Edwards' account. The company said Wilson Edwards' account was part of a disinformation campaign that originated in China.

The company's investigation found that the initial full broadcast of Wilson Edwards' story on Facebook was erroneous.

According to Facebook, the social media activity is targeting the English-speaking audience in the US and UK, as well as Chinese audiences in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Tibet.

Facebook deleted an account that was part of an international disinformation campaign

The social media giant said the operation collected hundreds of fake accounts and some authentic accounts from Sichuan Silent Information employees and people associated with Chinese state infrastructure companies.

Sichuan Silent Information described the company as a network and information security company. Provides technical assistance to China's Ministry of Public Security and CNCERT, the key team that coordinates China's emergency cybersecurity response.

Facebook said that after examining public reports focused on fake Swiss biologists, it deleted 524 accounts, 20 pages, four Facebook groups and 86 Instagram accounts as part of its investigation.

As part of the campaign, the scammers spent less than $5,000 on Facebook and Instagram ads. They also use a VPN to hide account values.

It is said that investigations into the origin of the novel coronavirus have led to tensions between the United States, China and other countries. The source of the virus remains a mystery nearly two years after it was first discovered.

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