Russia’s troll identities were more sophisticated than anyone thought

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The Russian troll farm has been hit with its first major indictment. Today, special counsel Robert Mueller laid out his criminal case against Russia’s Internet Research Agency, charging that the agency engaged in a sustained campaign to influence the 2016 presidential election. It’s a major shift for the organization, which has largely escaped blowback from the US, and it gives us the best look yet into how the Russian influence campaign actually played out.

One of the most surprising lessons of the indictment is just how seriously the Russians took their fake identities. We might associate troll accounts with spam or weird visuals, but at least some of the accounts described by Mueller were backed up by full-scale identity theft….

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