Social media giants take on foreign cyber attacks

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Leaders from social media giants, Facebook and Twitter, said their companies have been working hard to prevent foreign influence in the U.S. political debate. COO Sheryl Sandberg said Facebook takes foreign cyber attacks more seriously now than it did prior to the 2016 election.

“We were too slow to spot this and too slow to act. That is on us,” Sandberg said. 

She said Facebook constantly monitors it’s platform for foreign influence. But North Carolina Senator Richard Burr said many countries remain undeterred.

“More foreign countries are trying to use your products to shape and manipulate American political sentiment as an instrument of statecraft” Burr said. 

Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey said his company has also been making changes. He says Twitter removed fake users and blocked mis-information campaigns.

“We are identifying and challenging 8 to 10 million accounts every week,” Dorsey said. 

Lawmakers admitted social media companies can’t protect their platforms entirely on their own.
Virginia Senator Mark Warner says the government must step up its efforts to prevent foreign influence.

While Twitter and Facebook showed up for Wednesday’s hearing, Google refused to send an executive to Capitol Hill.

Lawmakers blasted Google for being a no-show. Officials shamed the company by leaving an empty seat with Google’s name front and center.

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