Of all the major social networks, X is the largest source of disinformation. Russia is particularly active on the former Twitter, said Věra Jourová, Vice-President of the European Commission.
The EU has prepared reports on how leading platforms, including Facebook by Meta Platforms, Google by Alphabet, and TikTok by ByteDance, are fighting disinformation.
Yurova called on social media to be more vigilant as a series of national and European elections take place over the coming year.
"This is a weapon of mass manipulation worth millions of euros, aimed both domestically at Russians and at Europeans and the rest of the world. The largest platforms should pay attention to the risk. Especially because of the expected activity of the Kremlin and others before the European elections," she told reporters.
In June 2024, the EU countries will hold elections to the European Parliament. In addition, elections are taking place or are scheduled to take place in a number of EU countries, such as Slovakia on September 30 and Poland on October 15.
In Slovakia, the party of former Prime Minister Robert Fico, who praises Vladimir Putin, claims that George Soros and the United States are scheming and promises to stop supplying weapons to Ukraine, has a high chance of winning. According to polls, only 40% of Slovaks believe that Russia is responsible for the outbreak of the war.
The activity of Russian propagandists in Slovakia is particularly high, Jurova said: "It was chosen as the country with the most favorable ground for the successful spread of pro-Kremlin, pro-war views. This week's vote will be a kind of test, as the issue of Russia's war in Ukraine is the most divisive."
Facebook and Google have taken steps to combat fake news under pressure from the EU, Yurova acknowledged. The latter, for example, blocked more than 400 channels that spread Russian propaganda in January-April.
Most platforms have agreed to work with the EU under a voluntary code of conduct aimed at establishing industry standards for fact-checking and limiting the spread of false information.
"X, formerly Twitter, which no longer adheres to the code, is the platform with the highest rate of posts spreading disinformation or misleading information," Yurova said.
The EC's analysis also showed that users who spread disinformation have many more followers than ordinary users.
Background. As a reminder, Musk announced a paid subscription for all X users. The businessman believes that paid access is the only way to resist bots.