Microblogging platform, Twitter, has announced that it has suspended over half a 1,000,000 accounts thought to be spam consistently.
Moreover, Twitter expressed huge number of accounts that can’t pass human confirmation are locked every week.
Twitter Chief Executive Officer, Parag Agrawal, who expressed this, explained that, this is an effort by the organization to reduce spam accounts.
Agrawal said the organization additionally faces the test of many accounts that look phony since they have no photos, but are subsequently confirmed to have real people behind them.
The Twitter CEO also conceded that battling spam is unquestionably powerful, adding, “the adversaries, their goals, and tactics evolve constantly – often in response to our work!
You can’t build a set of rules to detect spam today, and hope they will still work tomorrow.”
Amid the deal to sell the company to Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, Twitter had admitted that five per cent of accounts on the platform are spam.
Musk last week announced that the deal has been put on hold temporarily until the five per cent claim is investigated.
Narrating how the company has been tackling the challenge of spam via a Twitter thread, Agrawal said:
“First, let me state the obvious, spam harms the experience for real people on Twitter and therefore can harm our business. As such, we are strongly incentivised to detect and remove as much spam as we possibly can, every single day. Anyone who suggests otherwise is just wrong.
“Next, spam isn’t just ‘binary’ (human/not human). The most advanced spam campaigns use combinations of coordinated humans + automation. They also compromise real accounts, and then use them to advance their campaign. So – they are sophisticated and hard to catch.”
“We suspend over half a million spam accounts every day, usually before any of you even see them on Twitter. We also lock millions of accounts each week that we suspect may be spam – if they can’t pass human verification challenges (captchas, phone verification, among others).
“The hard challenge is that many accounts which look fake superficially – are actually real people. And some of the spam accounts which are actually the most dangerous – and cause the most harm to our users – can look totally legitimate on the surface,” he added.
He said the Twitter group updates its system and rules continually to eliminate as much spam as could be expected, without accidentally suspending real people or adding superfluous grinding for real humans when they use Twitter.
“Now, we know we aren’t perfect at catching spam. And so this is why, after all the spam removal I talked about above, we know some still slips through. We measure this internally. And every quarter, we have estimated that five per cent of reported mDAU for the quarter are spam accounts.
“Our estimate is based on multiple human reviews (in replicate) of thousands of accounts, that are sampled at random, consistently over time, from accounts we count as mDAUs. We do this every quarter, and we have been doing this for many years,” he explained.