During and now after the midterms, we saw the proliferation of Russian Infiltrator Trolls trying to embed themselves in the #Resistance in order to sabotage the primary process.
Here are a few of the Russians' tells.
Older Russian troll accounts often had serial numbers in their handle (i.e. Jenny8675309).
Most Russian accounts now "overshare" and give faux full names in a way no American would, because it would be self-doxxing.
My red flag goes WAY up if an account overtly asks for follow-backs, ESPECIALLY if I see in its TL that it overtly asks for follows from multiple resisters.
Follows are earned. Demonstrate your Resister street cred to get them.
Most Infiltrator Troll Accounts I have encountered disproportionately retweet, rather than produce original content.
If I suspect an account, and a perusal of its TL finds long strands of retweets, I get even more suspicious.
Not only do Russian accounts often have difficulty with basic English syntax and grammar, many Russian infiltrator trolls were taught ENGLAND English, and they'll often spell words like "Colour" or "Flavour" the British way.
Russian infiltrator accounts have elaborate faux backstories that they are FAR too eager to share.
"Of course I'm an American," they'll say, "I was born in X city at Y time. My blood type is Z and my mother's maiden name is ______!"
When in doubt, ask around.
The #Resistance is now full of hardened veterans of Russia's Disinformation War. Before following a suspect account, ask people you trust.
"Does anyone know this guy? Would you mind looking through its TL?"
Some Russian accounts used to be used for other things, or sometimes a Russian troll forgets to use different accounts for distinct activities.
There might be 'givewaways' in its twitter history: a pro-Ann Coulter tweet, for example.
We now know that Russian Infiltrator Accounts tried to suppress or confuse our 2016 vote.
Is what the account posts actively harming or helping our efforts to unseat Trump?
Is what the account posts beneficial to Russian interests?
Always employ 'critical thinking,' by which I mean 'to criticize, to critique, to doubt, to question.'
Russian disinformation efforts won't cease, but they can be marginalized or minimized.
Okay, there's a few more characteristics worth noting.
If the faux resister account is advocating violence, it's probably not a real Resister.
If the faux resister account attacks other resisters, it's probably not a real Resister.
Use a shibboleth to out a suspected Russian infiltrator account: some cultural touchstone that Americans would have experienced, but a foreigner would not.
My Jenny8675309 example from above is a fairly common one I've used before.
If it's still hung up on trashing Hillary Clinton (checks watch, sees that we are, indeed in 2018, about to turn over to 2019) it's probably a Russian infiltrator account.
No American still thinks in terms of Hillary v. Bernie, ffs.
A good lie is heavily mixed with verifiable truths: Russian accounts love to steal American identities and pretend to be people they've found online. They might use a real photo and name, but the account is not from that person.
Russian accounts usually get very irate when they're outed.
If I were to be accused of being a Russian troll, there are good Resisters who could vouch for me.
I wouldn't need to huff and puff and threaten and block.
Under no circumstance, EVER, should you click on a link included in a tweet or in the bio of a suspected Russian account.
It is almost certain to contain phishing malware.
You'll start to notice patterns:
You'll see the same FBR request repeated verbatim by multiple accounts.
You'll see the same avi recycled across multiple accounts.
You'll read the same disingenuous scripted propaganda over and over.