The Latest: Facebook disabled 1.3B fake accounts in 6 months

SAN FRANCISCO — The Latest on Facebook's content policing (all times local):

3 p.m.

Facebook says it disabled nearly 1.3 billion fake accounts in the six months through March.

Had the company failed to do so, its monthly user base would have swelled beyond its current 2.2 billion.

Even after all that disabling, though, Facebook has said that 3 percent to 4 percent of its active monthly users are fake, meaning up to 88 million fake accounts slip through.

Fake accounts have gotten more attention in recent months after it was revealed that Russian agents used them to buy ads to try to influence the 2016 elections.

The numbers were disclosed in a report Tuesday that breakdown how much material Facebook removes for violating service terms.

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7 a.m.

Facebook believes its policing system is better at scrubbing graphic violence, gratuitous nudity and terrorist propaganda from its social network than it is at removing racist, sexist and other hateful remarks polluting its influential service.

The self-assessment came Tuesday in Facebook's first breakdown of how much material it removes in an effort to shield its 2.2 billion users from offensive content and prevent the social network from becoming a terrorist recruitment center.

The increased transparency comes as the Menlo Park, California, company tries to make amends for a privacy scandal triggered by loose policies that allowed a data-mining company with ties to President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign to harvest personal information on about 87 million users.

Facebook's policing efforts are aimed at maintaining a family-friendly atmosphere for users and advertisers.

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