Google uncovered Russia-backed ads on YouTube, Gmail, other platforms

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This was a broad search, including, for instance, ads bought from accounts with US IP addresses but with the language set to Russian - even though they didn't necessarily violate any policy or law.

Google refused to provide additional comments but experts believe that based on the provided information so far, the company believes Russians spent about $100,000 on its platforms during the election campaign.

Facebook shared some of the data from its probe with Twitter and Google, sources previously told Recode.

Now Facebook is telling advertisers that political and other types of ads will be reviewed by humans before they go live, according to Axios.

US Congressional investigators have recently focused on the spread of false news stories and propaganda on social media, and have pressured Facebook, along with Twitter and Google, to release any Russia-linked ads.

This is the first time Google has discovered any evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 USA election. Almost $275,000 worth of ads on Twitter were bought by RT, a Russian government-linked news outlet, during 2016.

Google operates the largest online business of advertising in the world, and YouTube is the largest video site online in the world. The company said it found 450 accounts and about $100,000 was spent on the ads.




And on Sunday, The Daily Beast reported that Russia recruited YouTubers to "bash" Hillary Clinton, highlighting a pro-Donald Trump YouTube channel that it says was backed by the Russian government and was previously banned from Facebook and YouTube.

The report said the company discovered the Russian presence by siphoning data from Twitter.

Executives from Twitter and Facebook have said they will testify before Congress on November 1 regarding Russia's attempts to sow dissent on the social media platforms. Google has yet to confirm whether it will also give evidence at the hearing. The only location where Google allows ad targeting by political affiliation is the United States.

And, a significant discovery has been that the source of the funding for the ads, appears to be different from those identified by Facebook.

The Trump campaign used the technology to "microtarget on a scale never seen before", according to Parscale, who also noted that he specifically requested Republican employees from these social media and digital companies to embed with the campaign.

Facebook, Twitter and now Google.

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