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Facebook Bans Firm Behind Pfizer, AstraZeneca Smear Campaign

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FILE - In this April 23, 2021 file photo, The Facebook app is shown on a smart phone in Surfside, Fla. Facebook has removed hundreds of accounts linked to a disinformation network operating out of Russia that sought to smear COVID-19 vaccines made by Pfizer and AstraZeneca. The company said Tuesday, Aug. 10 that it has banned the advertising firm behind the campaign, which had offered to pay social media influencers in Europe if they posted their misleading content.(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

(AP) — Facebook has removed hundreds of accounts linked to a disinformation network operating out of Russia that sought to smear COVID-19 vaccines made by Pfizer and AstraZeneca.

The company said Tuesday that it has banned the advertising firm behind the campaign, which had offered to pay social media influencers in Europe if they posted their misleading content. The plan backfired when two of those influencers exposed the network.

Facebook said it traced the content to a firm called Fazze, which is registered in the United Kingdom but operates from Russia. Messages left seeking comment from Fazze were not returned Tuesday.

 

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