More than 83 million Facebook accounts are fake, the social network has revealed in a new filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). That represents 8.7 percent of Facebook's user base.
The 10-Q filing reveals that Facebook is aware of a large portion of accounts plaguing the site that shouldn't be there, with 4.8 percent of users (well over 45 million) owning "duplicate accounts", which aren't allowed under the terms and conditions of the service.
Beyond that, there are around 2.4 percent (just under 23 million) of "user-misclassified accounts", where users have created "personal profiles for a business, organization, or non-human entity such as a pet", which are meant to be hosted under its Pages section.
Lastly, some 1.5 percent of users (around 14 million accounts) are "undesirable", which refers to user profiles that "are intended to be used for purposes that violate our terms of service, such as spamming", Facebook explained in the filing.
Adding these percentages up and applying them to the last reported user base of 955 million means there are roughly 83,085,000 fake accounts in total on the site.
Despite these fake profile numbers, it's important to remember that Facebook still boasts some 872 legit accounts.
The revelations are yet more bad news for the firm, as it attempts to improve advertising revenues and grow its share price after a disappointing flotation on the stock market in May.
The report comes a week after the firm reported its first public earnings, which revealed a loss of $157 million for the quarter, sending its share price plummeting by almost 10 percent to its lowest price since it hit the market in May.
The firm's share price fell below $20 for the first time today, almost half its flotation value of $38.
Meanwhile, AllThingsD reported that Facebook is losing three executives: Ethan Beard, director of platform partnerships; Katie Mitic, platform marketing director; and Jonathan Matus, mobile platform marketing manager. All three announced their plans to leave the company yesterday.