Twitter suspended 70 million accounts in in the past two months as part of a crackdown on malicious activity on its platform, according to a report in The Washington Post. The rate of suspensions for May and June is reportedly twice the company’s October 2017 suspension rate.
The company has been widely criticised for years over seemingly lax efforts to police bad actors, including abusive users. As the scope of Russian disinformation campaigns were revealed, Twitter, along with Facebook, has faced increasing pressure from the public to stop trolls and spam.
In a blog post last month, Twitter said it had been working to improve its safety policies, and that its “systems identified and challenged more than 9.9 million potentially “spammy” or automated accounts per week.”
The Post reports that the change in enforcement could cause a decline in users for the company’s second quarter, although a Twitter executive told the publication that many of the accounts rarely tweeted, and would therefore not dramatically impact the company’s active user count.
A Twitter spokesperson said in a statement to The Verge that the company noted in its first-quarter shareholder letter this year that “ongoing information quality efforts” had negatively impacted monthly users, and that the efforts could continue to impact user numbers in the future.