A small portion directly named then-Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.
The revelations about ads on the social network can only add to the continuing political skirmishing in Washington over Russia's role in the election.
Most noteworthy given the public's intense interest in all things Russian is the fact that potential pro-Kremlin entities apparently purchased as much as $150,000 in political ads on the platform between 2015 and 2017.
"I get the fact that the Russian intel services could figure out how to manipulate and use the bots". Questions have always been raised about how they knew who to target and where. Mr Zuckerberg dismissed the notion that "fake news" on Facebook swayed the election as "crazy". Approximately 3,300 ads had ties to Russian Federation. In December, however, the company announced that it would begin flagging articles that had been deemed false or fake, with the assistance of fact-checking organizations. The official declined to release any of the ads it traced to Russian companies or entities.
Given the USA prohibition on foreign money being spent in elections, Facebook has a legal duty to act if it is aware of similar activity in the future, Fischer said.
As per the post by Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos, the posts were more centered around sowing disunity than on advancing a specific hopeful.More news: Fed Vice Chairman Fischer to Step Down
Facebook said it was trying.
"We know we have to stay vigilant to keep ahead of people who try to misuse our platform", Stamos said.
New policies include limits on news feeds that share stories with consistent clickbait headlines and blocks on pages that repeatedly share fake news stories to advertise. The Internet Research Agency is a group known for its pro-Kremlin online propaganda campaigns which US intelligence agencies believe is funded by a close associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin with connections to the Russian intelligence community.
In 2013, hackers released internal company documents showing it employed 600 people across Russian Federation. The company deemed the pages "inauthentic" and shut them down once it discovered their origins, it said.
But the findings buttress US intelligence agency conclusions that Russian Federation was actively involved in shaping the election. It also hunted for other suspect ads and found $50,000 spent on 2,200 ads it says could have been politically related. A Facebook spokesman told the magazine that the company had no evidence of such buys.
"It is unlawful for foreign nationals to be spending money in connection with any federal, state or local election, directly or indirectly", Weintraub said in a phone interview.