Facebook to verify major page owners to fight fake news

Apr 9, 2018 | Content marketing, Email marketing, Regulation, Social media

Facebook will start verifying the identities of people running popular pages on its social network, as part of its continued efforts to stem fake news and propaganda.

Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said all “large” pages would be audited – any which did not clear the process would be prevented from posting.

The move is designed to prevent users who run pages using fake accounts from hiding their true identity.

In a Facebook post last night, Mark Zuckerberg said the social media giant will begin to require people who manage “large” pages to be verified. “This will make it much harder for people to run pages using fake accounts, or to grow virally and spread misinformation or divisive content that way,” he said.

“Election interference is a problem that’s bigger than any one platform,” he wrote. “And that’s why we support the Honest Ads Act. This will help raise the bar for all political advertising online.”

Every advertiser who wants to run political ads on Facebook will need to be verified now by confirming their identity and location, and advertisers that do not pass will be prohibited from running political ads.

The new rules will be launched in the US and will expand to the rest of the world in the coming months.

Zuckerberg said he is committed to “making sure we support positive discourse and prevent interference in these elections”.

It comes after Facebook revealed some 87m users may have had their information improperly shared with political consultancy Cambridge Analytica, the bulk of which were based in the US. Facebook has said the firm may have obtained the data of 2.7m EU-based users of the social network.