Information Operations

 

Information Operations

 

01.

Overview

In line with our principles of transparency and to improve public understanding of inauthentic influence campaigns, Twitter is making publicly available archives of Tweets and media that we believe resulted from state-backed information operations on our service. 

 

We believe Twitter has a responsibility to protect the integrity of the public conversation — including through the timely disclosure of information about attempts to manipulate Twitter to influence elections and other civic conversations by foreign or domestic state-backed entities. We believe the public and research community are better informed by transparency.

 

In October 2018, we launched the first archive in the industry of potential foreign information operations we have seen on Twitter. It is our fundamental belief that these accounts should be made public and searchable so members of the public, governments, and researchers can investigate, learn, and build media literacy capacities for the future.

 

Transparency has been a critical part of this company from the start. We expanded this dataset considerably with several separate updates over the past couple of years — we're the only company to offer this level of granularity and transparency.

 

For our part, we are learning, evolving, and building a technological and personnel-driven approach to combating inauthentic influence campaigns. We hope that holistic, transparent disclosures such as this can help us all learn and build the necessary societal defenses and capacities to protect public conversation.

 

 

 

02.

FAQs

What will you release in the future?

If and when we identify additional attempted information operations on Twitter in the future,  our first priority is to enforce our rules and remove accounts engaged in attempts to manipulate the public conversation.  Following these enforcements, we carry out thorough investigations of the accounts and individuals involved. We only disclose datasets once we have determined attribution, and once all applicable investigations have concluded. We may also release incremental additions to existing datasets if we believe the additional information could materially impact research findings.

 

What’s included?

Platform manipulation that we can reliably attribute to a government or state-backed actor is considered an information operation and is prohibited by the Twitter Rules.

 

These datasets are of a size that a degree of capability for large dataset analysis is required. You can download the datasets below. While no content has been redacted, some account-specific information has been hashed to protect account privacy.

 

These datasets include profile information, Tweets and media (e.g., images and videos) from accounts we believe are connected to state-backed information operations. Tweets and media which were deleted are not included in the datasets. Note that not all of the accounts we identified as connected to these campaigns actively Tweeted, so the number of accounts represented in the datasets may be less than the total number of accounts attributed to the information operation and enforced against.

 

Why hash some of the information?

For accounts with fewer than 5,000 followers, we have hashed certain identifying fields (such as user ID and screen name) in the publicly-available version of the datasets. While we’ve taken every possible precaution to ensure there are no false positives in these datasets, we’ve hashed these fields to reduce the potential negative impact on authentic or compromised accounts — while still enabling longitudinal research, network analysis, and assessment of the underlying content created by these accounts. 

 

Specialist researchers can apply below for research access to an unhashed version of these datasets. Access to the unhashed version is governed by a data license agreement limiting usage of the unhashed datasets to research purposes, with provisions to ensure the researcher may only use the data in a limited manner and with appropriate security measures in place.

 

What can I do if I believe I've been included here in error?

If you believe your account has been included in error, please log into your account and file a suspension appeal here. We carefully review these cases, and will help restore potentially compromised accounts, or accounts that may have been included in error, to their owners.

 

03.

Download Archive

03.

Download Archive

You can download the datasets by entering your email address and clicking “Submit”. Your use of the datasets is governed by the Twitter Developer Agreement and Policy. By clicking “Submit”, you agree to the Twitter Developer Agreement and Policy.

 

If you believe your account has been included in error, please log into your account and file a suspension appeal here. We carefully review these cases, and will help restore potentially compromised accounts, or accounts that may have been included in error, to their owners.

Submit

Enter your email:

     

    04.

    Unhashed Releases

    04.

    Unhashed Releases

    To request research access to the unhashed version of these datasets, please complete this form.

    Submit

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