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Report: Google finds Russia bought ads on its platforms to influence 2016 election

The search giant has uncovered evidence that shows Russian operatives on YouTube, Gmail, search listings, and via the company’s DoubleClick aimed at spreading disinformation before the 2016 presidential election, the Washington Post reports. The Post is reporting their sources are “people familiar with the company’s investigation” as Google has not gone public the information yet.

The Post reports that the discovery is significant because it appears the tens of thousands of dollars spent on the ads on Google’s platforms do not appear to be from the same “Internet Research Agency” troll farm that worked to influence the election using Facebook’s and Twitter’s platforms. If that is the case, the Post speculates that the reach of Russia’s meddling in U.S. elections via an online disinformation campaign may be much broader than originally suspected.MG