Election 2016

Fake America Great Again: Inside the Race to Catch Real Fakes Using AI

Photo fakery is far from new, but artificial intelligence will completely change the game. Until recently only a big-budget movie studio could carry out a video face-swap, and it would probably have cost millions of dollars. Artificial Intelligence (AI) now makes it possible for anyone with a decent computer and a few hours to spare to do the same thing. Further machine-learning advances will make even more complex deception possible—and make fakery harder to spot. These advances threaten to further blur the line between truth and fiction in politics.

Russian Trolls Amped Up Tweets for Pro-Trump Website's Content

Russia’s social-media trolling operation began stepping up its Twitter presence to new heights in late July 2017 -- more than eight months after sowing discord and disinformation in the 2016 presidential election. The burst of activity -- revealed in a new, comprehensive dataset of nearly 3 million tweets -- had an overriding focus over the ensuing three months: popularizing headlines and news stories that were originally authored by a US-based news site called Truthfeed that supports President Donald Trump and specializes in hyper-partisan, factually incorrect stories.

Several groups banned by Facebook had strong similarities to Twitter accounts linked to Russia six weeks ago

At least three groups that Facebook banned recently for spreading disinformation shared similar names and traits with Twitter accounts that had been linked publicly to Russia earlier this year, underscoring the challenges of swiftly shutting down a foreign influence campaign even once strong hints emerge of who is behind it. Facebook’s handling of the situation underscores the nation’s struggles to respond to credible reports of disinformation two years after the first signs that Russians were seeking to manipulate the 2016 presidential election.

How they did it (and will likely try again): GRU hackers vs. US elections

In a recent press briefing, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced that the grand jury assembled by Special Counsel Robert Mueller had returned an indictment against 12 officers of Russia's Main Intelligence Directorate of the Russian General Staff (better known as Glavnoye razvedyvatel'noye upravleniye, or GRU).

The Political Education of Silicon Valley

As the tech industry has grown in power and influence, its politics have moved to the left. When people want to understand Silicon Valley’s political leanings, they often look to CA’s 17th Congressional District. Apple and Intel are headquartered there, as is Tesla’s manufacturing plant. In 2016, the voters of the 17th elected Ro Khanna, a former deputy assistant secretary in Obama’s Commerce Department, to represent them. Based on his 2017 legislative record, GovTrack ranked Rep Khanna the 14th-most-liberal representative in the House.

Taking Sides on Facebook: How Congressional Outreach Changed Under President Trump

The 2016 presidential election coincided with substantial shifts in the ways that members of Congress communicated with their constituents online. Democrats expressed political opposition nearly five times as much under President Donald Trump as they did during the last two years of Barack Obama’s presidency.

12 Russian Agents Indicted, Accused of Hacking the DNC

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced new charges against 12 Russian intelligence officers accused of hacking the Democratic National Committee, the Clinton presidential campaign, and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Rosenstein said the Russians involved belonged to the military intelligence service GRU. They are accused of a sustained cyberattack against Democratic party targets, including its campaign committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign.

Russian Influence Campaign Sought To Exploit Americans' Trust In Local News

Russia's information attack against the United States during the 2016 election cycle sought to take advantage of the greater trust that Americans tend to place in local news.The information operatives who worked out of the Internet Research Agency in St. Petersburg not only sought to pose as American social media users or spread false information from purported news sources, according to new details. They also created a number of Twitter accounts that posed as sources for Americans' hometown headlines. 

Russian company had access to Facebook user data through apps

Mail.Ru Group, a Russian internet company with links to the Kremlin, was among the firms to which Facebook gave an extension which allowed them to collect data on unknowing users of the social network after a policy change supposedly stopped such collection. Facebook said apps developed by Mail.Ru Group were being looked at as part of the company's wider investigation into the misuse of Facebook user data in light of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Mail.Ru Group developed hundreds of Facebook apps, some of which were test apps that were not made public.