Google joins search for election info

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Google says it is digging into its vaults for evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 election, after Virginia U.S. Sen. Mark Warner slammed Twitter for a response to a congressional probe he called inadequate.

The search giant said in a statement Friday evening that it is cooperating with inquiries and is looking for how it can help with any relevant information.

Google, Facebook and Twitter have all been invited to appear at public hearings this month by the House intelligence committee and Nov. 1 by the Senate intelligence committee.

After Twitter told congressional investigators in a closed door meeting Friday it had suspended at least two dozen accounts that may have been tied to Russia, Warner said the company’s findings were merely “derivative” of Facebook’s work and “showed an enormous lack of understanding from the Twitter team of how serious this issue is, the threat it poses to democratic institutions.”

In a blog post, Twitter said it found 22 accounts corresponding to about 450 Facebook accounts that were likely operated out of Russia and pushed divisive social and political issues during the presidential election. Facebook has said those accounts were responsible for buying about 3,000 ads worth about $100,000.

Twitter says it also found an additional 179 related accounts and took action against ones that violated its rules. The company didn’t specify how many of those accounts were suspended or the type of action taken.

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