Misinformation and Election Meddling 

Misinformation and Election Meddling 

Three years after the 2016 presidential election, America is still coming to grips with the chaotic circumstances that surrounded it. And whatever may happen in 2020, it cannot rival the historical significance of an event that tech commentator Andrew Keen appropriately christened “the first real Internet election”.

Representing the confluence of technology and culture at a pivotal moment in global politics, 2016 showed Americans just how much sway the digital world holds. Social media platforms have borne the brunt of responsibility for allowing the election to become a spectacle fueled by “fake news,” foreign propaganda, and incendiary rhetoric.

But what we learned is third-party code is the culprit; a staggering 80-95% fo all media site code is created by third parties. This third-party code enables foreign powers and domestic interest groups to sway elections through targeted content algorithms across social media and news sites. Policy is lagging behind tech in this respect; to protect the integrity of elections, legislators need to protect the integrity of information – not just the polling booths and election infrastructure.

Additional Resources

Journal of Cyber Policy

October 7, 2019

By Chris Olson

News Insights: The Price of Influence: Disinformation in the Private Sector >Read More



October 15, 2019

By Chris Olson

How Personalization and Targeted Advertising Enable Election Meddling >Read More

The CyberWire Podcast

November 14, 2019

Interview with Chris Olson

Skepticism is the First Step >Listen In

3PC Blog

Media Supply Chain – Not Voting Fraud – Is the Biggest Danger to U.S Elections >Read More