Russian election meddlers started an anti-masturbation hotline, report claims

The Russia-linked Internet Research Agency (IRA) may have tried to blackmail potential American recruits by setting up a fake anti-masturbation hotline, according to a new report prepared for the Senate Intelligence Committee. The IRA reportedly advertised its hotline on a fake Christian Facebook page, encouraging readers to reach out if they were “struggling with the addiction to masturbation.”

This bizarre detail was part of a larger analysis of ongoing Russian political influence campaigns on social media that were produced by researchers at cybersecurity company New Knowledge, Columbia University, and Canfield Research. It’s meant to illustrate the reach and complexity of the IRA’s operations, although the report doesn’t say whether…

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