Facebook quarterly profit rises on mobile ad growth

Facebook vows to double its cyber safety and security staff

The release of a trove of Facebook ads bought by a Russian firm show a clear attempt to target the information to certain audiences.

The ads release by the House committee was the last in a trickle of examples Congress used during its two-day-long grilling of Facebook, Twitter, and Google.

Focused on Russia's alleged use of Facebook, Google, and Twitter to meddle with USA politics, the hearing was a forum for senators to ask executives at those companies questions about the propaganda operation and voice their concerns.

Numerous ads disclosed Wednesday appear aimed at creating confusion and anger among Facebook users, encouraging them in some cases to attend rallies in support of or against a political cause and using real news stories as a basis for attacks against political candidates.

In one example, a group named "Back the Badge" was promoted on the service, described as a "community of people who support our fearless Police Officers". It received 761 clicks.

That ad was targeted at people who had expressed an interest in Hillary Clinton or the Muslim Brotherhood on Facebook and who lived in Washington, DC.

Jeff Bezos Becomes World's Richest Person For Second Time, Beats Bill Gates
Gates first hit the big time in 1995 when he was 39 and his $12.9 billion fortune put him on top of the billionaire ratings. Microsoft stock climbed about $6 a share, so Gates added nearly $600 million to his personal wealth.

One ad encouraging Facebook users to like one of those pages, "Black Matters". In after-hours trading, they were rising more than 1 percent on top of that. The ad featured pictures of African-American people shot by police, and contained the message, "Join us because we care". Perhaps you were encouraged to "like" a post if you wanted Jesus to triumph over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election?

Senators were not impressed the big tech companies sent their general counsels to three hearings this week and called on the companies to be tougher in the face of national security threats. In preparation for hearings this week, Facebook disclosed that content generated by a Russian group, the Internet Research Agency, potentially reached as many as 126 million users. They have not yet been released, but Burr revealed some details in an attempt to rebut reports that they were targeted to contested states such as MI and Wisconsin close to the November 2016 election. In one case, one of the ads - a video parodying Donald Trump - targeted blacks who also are interested in BlackNews.com, HuffPost Politics or HuffPost Black Voices.

The same account promoted a pro-Bernie Sanders coloring book. The coloring is something that suits for all people.

The companies also testified before the U.S. House Intelligence Committee later on Wednesday.

The FBI and special counsel Robert Mueller are investigating potential ties between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign to tip the election, and prosecutors this week announced the first charges in that probe.

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