BORIS Johnson is being targeted by cyber soldiers as part of a large-scale Kremlin disinformation campaign, it has emerged.
A Russian troll factory plaguing social media with lies has been exposed with the possibility operatives could be delivering the propaganda from Britain.
Masterminds are working out of an old factory in St Petersburg in a bid to manipulate public opinion of the illegitimate war in Ukraine, expert research shows.
Their supporters target senior UK ministers spamming them with pro-Putin and pro-war messages in the comment sections of social media platforms.
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said: “We cannot allow the Kremlin and its shady troll farms to invade our online spaces with their lies about Putin’s illegal war.
“The UK Government has alerted international partners and will continue to work closely with allies and media platforms to undermine Russian information operations.”
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Activity has been detected across Twitter, Facebook, Telegram, Instagram, YouTube and TikTok. Influencers on TikTok are being paid to amplify the propaganda.
Tactics are similar to those used by terror group ISIS and political conspirators QAnon to in a large-scale effort to sway public opinion.
The PM has been targeted as well as Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, German leader Olaf Scholz. Trolls use the comment sections which makes it harder for social media firms to detect.
Activity has been detected in western media across 13 countries with the a major role being played by the Telegram channel Cyber Front Z, expert research funded by the UK shows.
The movement is thought to be made up of a core of professional trolls followed up by a larger number of sympathiser accounts.
Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries last night said: “These are insidious attempts by Putin and his propaganda machine to deceive the world about the brutality he’s inflicting on the people of Ukraine.
“This evidence will help us to more effectively identify and remove Russian disinformation and follows our decisive action to block anyone from doing business with Kremlin-controlled outlets RT and Sputnik.”
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