On Monday, Microsoft told Reuters that the company is looking to see if Russians purchased ads on Microsoft owned products and platforms in order to influence the results of 2016 U.S. election. Microsoft is reportedly reviewing sales records as part of the process and is looking to take steps to prevent "inappropriate activity" from happening in the future.
The news comes after other tech giants are scheduled to make appearances in front of the U.S. Congress in regards to the impact of ads, fake profiles and misinformation set forth by Russian agents on social media or ad platforms ahead of the United States election. A Microsoft spokesperson provided Reuters with the following statement:
“We take reports of misuse of our platform seriously... We are therefore investigating and if inappropriate activity is found, we will take steps to minimize such misuse in the future.”
Although some tech companies like Oath were not as open with their internal investigations, it's great to see Microsoft following the likeness of Google, Facebook, and Twitter to see if Russian based operatives purchased ads and conducted "inappropriate activity" on Microsoft platforms and products in order to impact the 2016 U.S. election. This will be a long talked about topic, and as the investigation unfolds, there will no doubt be more to come.