Election watchdog seeks digitally savvy specialists to zero in on threats

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OTTAWA — Canada’s election watchdog is seeking three specialists to monitor social media for threats to the integrity of the next federal election.

The move follows troublesome evidence of online Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential vote.

In a recruitment notice issued today, the Commissioner for Canada Elections says the specialists would collect and analyze content starting in January from social media, blogs, chatrooms, message boards, and video- and image-sharing websites.

They would also help investigators with cases and assist with court proceedings by giving testimony and preparing electronic evidence.

Last year Facebook said hundreds of dubious accounts, likely operated out of Russia, spent about $100,000 on some 3,000 ads about contentious issues such as LGBT rights, race, immigration and guns from June 2015 to May 2017.

Facebook later said an estimated 10 million people in the United States saw the ads.

The Canadian Press

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