Facebook, Twitter face U.S. Congress over politics and the internet

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Twitter Inc. shares fell as much as 6.6% as Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee in Washington, though it's unclear why the stock is down so much.

Many senators expressed anger at Google, which was represented in the hearing room by an empty chair next to Sandberg.

Sandberg, in her prepared remarks, detailed how Facebook was addressing the problem but reiterated that the company was slow to spot it. "We fixed it", Dorsey said.

Sandberg committed to not doing business with China or other countries that conflict with Facebook's values.

"This is an arms race, and that means we need to be ever more vigilant", Sandberg says. Earlier this year Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before lawmakers in part to explain how the personal information of tens of millions of Facebook users ended up in the hands of the United Kingdom -based data firm Cambridge Analytica.

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A committee spokesperson said Walker's "commentary" was not testimony, adding, "We wish his enthusiasm for participating in the company's public hearing extended to his company's senior leadership, and that they were willing to answer the committee's questions".

The hearing comes after months of bruising scandals for Facebook, including the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which as many as 87 million users had their information improperly obtained, and further revelations around Russian misuse of the platform to interfere with the 2016 USA presidential election.

Earlier this year the company said it was taking aggressive measures to combat inauthentic accounts.

In a House of Representatives hearing, Representative Greg Walden, chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, said Twitter had made "mistakes" that, he said, minimized Republicans' presence on the social media site, a practice conservatives have labeled "shadow banning".

Facing growing criticism from President Trump and GOP lawmakers that social media platforms favor liberals, Dorsey insisted Twitter is impartial.

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Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey says in pre-released House testimony that his company does not use political ideology to make decisions.

Laura Rosenberger, the Director of the Alliance for Securing Democracy at the German Marshall Fund, told ABC News that likely won't be a problem for the Senate Intelligence Committee, as that committee in particular has been "steeped in understanding the challenges posed by foreign interference".

During Wednesday's hearing, Sandberg reiterated that such threats would continue and that Facebook would keep working to address them.

"My view is personal data is now the weapon of choice for political influence campaigns and we must not make it easier for our adversaries to seize these weapons and use them against us", Wyden said while discussing ways Congress can assist in this issue.

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