Brits detect pro-Russian troll factory near St. Petersburg

Troll alert. Pro-Russian accounts are waging an information war from a former factory in St. the subject.

The report, whose authors have not been identified for security reasons, “shows how the Kremlin is using a troll factory to relay lies on social media and in the comments of sites with large audiences”, the report said. UK Foreign Office in a statement. According to the statement, this Russian disinformation campaign “is designed to manipulate international public opinion regarding the Russian war in Ukraine”.

Fighting these destabilization operations

According to research, pro-Russian operatives recruit Telegram trolls who are paid to target Western media accounts and leaders on social media and relay pro-Kremlin propaganda.

“We cannot allow the Kremlin and its troll factories to invade our online spaces with their lies,” said British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss. The British government has alerted its foreign partners and will continue to work with its allies and online platforms to combat Russian operations. Among the leaders targeted, Boris Johnson, but also the German Chancellor Olaf Scholz or the head of European diplomacy Josep Borell. Daft Punk, David Guetta and the German metal band Rammstein have also been targeted as part of this disinformation campaign, which is very active on Instagram, YouTube and Tiktok.

Like prorussian anonymous accounts

Another technique used by these trolls is to amplify and give more visibility to posts by ordinary users and which go in the direction of the Kremlin, reports the study. A way to escape the measures put in place by social networks to combat misinformation on their platforms.

A group known on Telegram as “Cyber ​​Front Z” is said to be at the heart of these maneuvers and is renting its premises in a former arms factory located in Saint Petersburg. The group is suspected of being linked to Yevgueni Prigojine, a magnate close to the Kremlin notably accused of having played a role in Russian interference during the American presidential election of 2016, said the British ministry. Prigozhin is among those sanctioned by London over his ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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