Thousands of Instagram accounts are hawking medical face masks that could be fraudulent or pose a safety risk, according to a report by an independent research group, a sign of Facebook’s struggles to police users who appear to be taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic.

Researchers found at least 10,450 accounts on Instagram that have popped up in the past few months selling masks, some of which appear to be scams and most of which aren’t vetted for safety or price concerns. The offers appear through a main page or by using the app’s features including Stories, where posts vanish after 24 hours, or live video. Many of the accounts have only popped up in the past month or two, and most appear to be based in China, said Andrea Stroppa, founder of the social-media research firm Ghost Data, which wrote the report.

Read More