[UPDATED] Facebook and Instagram have filed a lawsuit in US Federal Court against four companies and three individuals for selling fake accounts, likes and followers. The China based companies being sued also target other online service providers including Apple, Google, LinkedIn and Twitter.
"By filing the lawsuit, we hope to reinforce that this kind of fraudulent activity is not tolerated, said Facebook, "and that we’ll act forcefully to protect the integrity of our platform."
The lawsuit asks the court to prevent these people and companies from:
- Creating and promoting the sale of fake accounts, likes, and followers on Facebook and Instagram
- Infringing on trademarks on their websites
- Using Facebook branded domain names to operate their websites (i.e. cyber squatting)
"Inauthentic activity has no place on our platform," said Facebook. "That’s why we devote significant resources to detecting and stopping this behavior, including disabling millions of fake accounts every day. Today’s lawsuit is one more step in our ongoing efforts to protect people on Facebook and Instagram."