Twitter has released its latest transparency report and outlined thecompany's efforts to eradicate terrorist content, violent extremism, and child sexual exploitation from its service.
During 2018, Twitter said that a total of 166,513 accounts were suspended for violations related to promotion of terrorism, which is a reduction of 19% from the volume shared in the previous reporting period. Of those suspensions, 91% consisted of accounts flagged by internal, purpose-built technological tools. In the majority of cases, Twitte rsays it takes action at the account setup stage — before the account even Tweets.
Twitter also suspended a total of 456,989 unique accounts for violations related to child sexual exploitation, which is down 6% from the volume disclosed in the previous reporting period. Of those unique accounts suspended, 96% were surfaced by a combination of technology solutions, including PhotoDNA and internal proprietary tools.
Proactive challenges of accounts for spammy behavior and platform manipulation have decreased by 17% in the second half of 2018 versus the first half, totalling 194 million challenges in the second half of 2018. Approximately 75% were subsequently automatically removed after failing Twitter's account challenge process.
As in past reports, Twitter is only able to publish very limited information about national security requests due to legal prohibitions that the company continues to challenge in court.
Together with Facebook and Google, Twitter is under pressure from regulators and governments worldwide to remove extremist content more rapidly or face more heavy-handed legislation.