Google the Latest Tech Giant to Uncover Ads by Russian Operatives: Reports - NBC 7 San Diego
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Google the Latest Tech Giant to Uncover Ads by Russian Operatives: Reports

"We are taking a deeper look to investigate attempts to abuse our systems, working with researchers and other companies, and will provide assistance to ongoing inquiries," Google said in a statement

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    President Donald Trump said Thursday he would "thank" Russian President Vladimir Putin for ousting U.S. diplomats from Russia, saying he was "thankful" for reducing the federal government's payroll. The ouster followed U.S. imposing sanctions on Russia in response to Kremlin interference in the 2016 presidential election. It was not clear how Putin's retaliatory expulsion might reduce the payroll of the U.S. government. (Published Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017)

    Russian operatives likely spent tens of thousands of dollars on ads across Google products, including YouTube and Google search, according to reports.

    Accounts connected with the Russian government spent $4,700 on search and display ads, while another $53,000 was spent on ads with political material that were purchased from Russian territory, from Russian internet addresses, or with Russian currency, The New York Times reported . The Times cited an unnamed person familiar with the ongoing inquiry by the search giant.

    The Washington Post earlier reported that the technology behemoth uncovered the Russian-backed disinformation campaign as it considers whether to testify before Congress next month, also citing anonymous sources familiar with the investigation. Social media companies Facebook and Twitter have already agreed to testify.

    The reports said the company discovered the Russian presence by analyzing information shared by Twitter and Facebook, as well its own research and tips from outside researchers.

    Russia Investigation Heats Up as Mueller Convenes Grand Jury

    [NATL] Russia Investigation Heats Up as Mueller Convenes Grand Jury

    The Wall Street Journal reports Special Counsel Robert Mueller has put together a grand jury to look into possible collusion between Russia and the Trump Campaign. "The Russia story is a total fabrication. What the prosecutors should be looking at are Hillary Clinton's 33-thousand deleted emails," declared President Donald Trump.

    (Published Friday, Aug. 4, 2017)

    In a statement, Google said it has a "set of strict ads policies including limits on political ad targeting and prohibitions on targeting based on race and religion."

    "We are taking a deeper look to investigate attempts to abuse our systems, working with researchers and other companies, and will provide assistance to ongoing inquiries," the statement continued.

    Facebook recently shared about 3,000 Russian-backed ads with Congress.

    U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded that Russian President Vladimir Putin directed a disinformation campaign aimed at helping Donald Trump win the presidential election.