Google removes YouTube channels and web accounts tied to Iran | Advertising

has deleted 39 YouTube channels and 19 other web pages connected to the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, a state-run media outlet, citing “attempted state-sponsored hacking and influence campaigns.” The move comes after Facebook and Twitter pulled hundreds of social accounts tied to Iran for similar reasons.

Alphabet’s Google concluded that the manipulation efforts began as early as January 2017, Kent Walker, head of global affairs, wrote in a blog post on Thursday. Google worked with cybersecurity firm FireEye to identify the accounts from Iran. “We can’t go into all the technical details without giving away information that would be helpful to others seeking to abuse our platforms,” Walker wrote in the post.

Google has faced less political fire than Facebook and Twitter for letting state-sponsored election meddling spread on its services. But U.S. officials have identified ways that Russian-backed actors used YouTube as a vehicle for political influence. Walker is slated to testify before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing about foreign election interference on Sept. 5.

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