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Facebook Tackles News Feed Cloaking with AI

A News Feed littered with fake posts and false links make browsing Facebook a bad experience. In a pursuit of authenticity, the social network is turning to technology to address the issue.

In addition to expanding its human review process, Facebook announced this week that it plans to leverage artificial intelligence in order to identify, capture, and verify cloaking—a “deliberate and deceptive” ploy that the company insists it will not tolerate on its site.

“We are always working to combat the spread of misinformation and the financially-motivated bad actors who create misleading experiences for people,” says Rob Leathern, Product Management Director for Facebook.

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“Cloaking” sees bad actors disguise the true destination of an ad or post, or the actual content of a destination page, in order to bypass Facebook’s review processes. These include diet pills, pornography, and muscle building scams.

“We can now better observe differences in the type of content served to people using our apps compared to our own internal systems,” added Bobbie Chang, a Software Engineer for Facebook. “In the past few months, these new steps have resulted in us taking down thousands of these offenders and disrupting their economic incentives for misleading people.”

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