tv Senate Intelligence on Foreign Influence on Social Media CSPAN August 6, 2018 8:32am-11:03am EDT
order. i'd like to welcome our witnesses say. dr. "iso," at the rand corporation. train to come a director of new knowledge. john kelly, ceo and founder of graphic. laura rosenberg, director of the alliance for security and democracy and dr. phil howard, director of the oxford internet institute. welcome to all of you. thank you for being here today and your willingness to share expertise and insights with this committee and more importantly with the american people. we are here to discuss the threat to the nation that this committee takes every bit as seriously as terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, espionage and regional instability. today we talk about how social media platforms have been made to influence operations against the united states. i remember this committee and
the american people understand what an attack on the integrity of our. in the world process means. election interference from abroad represents an intolerable assault of a democratic foundation republicans build on. the committee in a bipartisan fashion has addressed this issue head-on. and maybe released the the initial findings of our investigationn into russia's targeting of election infrastructure during the 2016 election. today's hearing is an extension of the effort but in some ways that highlight something far more sinister. the use of our own rights and freedoms to weaken our country from within. it's also important american people know these activities neither began nor ended with the 2016 elections. as you can see on one graph on display to my left, you're right, the kremlin began testing this capability on domestic populationne several years ago
before using it against their foes in the near broad and on the night states and western democracy. even today, almost two years after the 2016 election for a not discontinue an aggressive and pervasive influence campaign against the united states of america. nothing underscores that fact more than yesterday's announcement by facebook that they've identified over 30 new accounts not only causing chaos in the virtual domain, but also creating events on our street with real americans unknowingly participating.at the cyberactors are using social media platforms to spread disinformation, provokes societal conflict and undermined public faith in the democratic institution. there does not seem to be much debate about that. it's also the case for social media isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
it's part of how we exchange ideas come and stay it, binds us as a community. social media is the modern public forum and it's being used to divide us. this was never about elections. it is about the integrity of our society. so how do you keep the good bad? getting rid of the that's the fundamental question in front of this committee and a friend of the american people and it's a complex problem that intertwines first amendment freedoms with corporate responsibility, government regulation in the right of innovators to prosper from their own work. 60% of the population uses facebook or to foreign power using the platform to influence our america seed bank about one another it is a national security concern.
the solution is effective but not overly burdensome demands good faith and partnership between social media companies in thisci committee. we hope to hear from innovators doesn't number because you can't solve a problem like this by imposing a solution from 3000 miles away. this requires a full and informed publicno policy debates uniquely positioned to foster thatis debate. last november c when we first spoke of the social media companies in open hearing. i stress than what this debate is and is not about. this isn't about relitigate in the 2016 u.s. presidential elections. this is about national security. this is about corporate responsibility and this is about the deliberate and multifaceted manipulation of the american people by agents off a foreign
hospitalre government. thank you for being here, the work you've done to your analytic and technical expertise is indispensable to us getting this right. we cannot possibly formulate the right solution without first knowing the extent of the problem. i'mus hopeful this morning thats you offer your insights and findings that you also share your recommendations. we can afford an effective half measures, let alone nothing at all. what's shocking to think foreign actors social networking and communication mediums that are central to our lives in an effort to interfere with the tour of our democracy, what is eveno more troubling is that is still happening today. nothing less than the integrity of the democratic institutions, processes and ideals. i turn now to the vice chairman. >> thank you. i also want to welcome our witnesses today. they've invested a significant
amount of time focused on energy both in public and behind closed doors in uncovering of exposing russian information warfare. the efforts have increased understanding of what the russians did and how they sought to attack us through the use of social media. thereck was pressure by this committee that led facebook, twitter and youtube to uncover malicious site to be by the russian backed research agency. these revelations eventually resulted individuals and three russian companies by the special counsel's office in february of spthis year. oversight has not typically been a function of any committee. i have no problem acknowledging that the terminology of this world click bait, trolls, does
not come naturally to all of us. to understand what happened 2016 and to stop it from happening again, we have been able to accomplish a lot. we've helped reveal the russian playbook. we have raised public awareness regarding the threat and we have succeeded however incrementally in pressuring each of these companies to take steps to address the problems on their platforms. that's the good news. the bad news is we've got a lot more work to do. 21 month and only three months before the 2018 elections, russian operatives continue to infiltrate and manipulate the hijacked national conversation that americans against each other. they were doing it in 2016. they are still doing it today.
the chairman noted when facebook announced the takedown of 32 new pages and accounts to russian backed operations amid hundreds of thousands ofe followers. in previous hearings than russian disinformation from alpine russian playbook of the 2016 elections. we discussed the russian operatives set up thousands of fake and automated account on facebook, instagram, twitter, youtube and others in order to build networks of hundreds of thousands of realds americans. these networks pushed an array of disinformation including stolen e-mails from the statelet propaganda, fake nose and divisive content onto the new seeds as many potentially receptive americans as they could. he wanted noo doubt hear today from our experts that they were extremely successful in that
effort. these active measures have two things in common. first, their effect is. and second, they are cheap. for pennies on the dollar they can wreck havoc on our society and in our elections. i am concerned that even after he denounced the study we are still only scratching the surface when it comes to russia's information warfare. much of the initial focus is on paid advertisements but it quickly became clear that these ads represented a tiny percentage of the ira at committee compared to hundreds of thousands of free facebook and instagram pages and groups and millions of tweets from ira backed accounts. today it is becoming clear that i do believe represents just a small fraction of the total russian effort on social media. in reality, the ira operatives who just the incompetent ones
who made it easy to get caught. who else is out there selectively attacking us? what about the russian intelligence services. how much further out there think this russian disinformation effort goes. i'm also concerned the united states government is not well to detect, track or counter these types of influence operations and social media. these types of asymmetric attacks whichnt include foreign operatives. to be americans engaging in online public discourse almost by design split between the scenes of our legal authorities and responsibilities. again, i hope our witnesses will recommend ideas for better tackling this problem while also protecting our constitutional rights as americans. all the evidence this committee has seen today suggest that the
platform companies, namely facebook, instagram, twitter and youtube still have a lot of work to do. before i went into politics he spent 20 years in the tech business and i have tremendous respect for these companies and when they are at their best, they are a symbol of what this country does best. innovation, job creation, change in the world. i've been hard on them is true, but it's because they know they can do better to protect our democracy. they have the creativity, expertise, resources and avtechnological capability to gt ahead of these malicious actors. that's why it's the chairman mentioned will be hosting senior executives from based though, twitter and google for a hearing of the number fit to hear the plans they have in place, to press them to do more than to work together to address this challenge. that's because it's only going toer get harder. as digital targeting continues
to improve a new advances in technology and artificial intelligence, one that i'm particularly concerned on continued to spread the magnitude of the challenge will only grow. i know it today will focus on what happens in 2016 and one is happening now. russian active measures have revealed a dark underbelly of the social media ecosystem. the same tools to spread misinformation can negatively affect other aspects of our lives. we need to start pushing ourselves beyond just recognizing the problems t and start to press actual policy ideas forward. i'm interested j in hearing some of those policy operations that might help us address broader challenges by a few social media companies. icfor example, does the user hae the right to know if they are interacting with a person or a bot online. few companies have a responsibility to ensure more
transparency apposite collect, use and secure user data. users have enough control over their own personal data. i hope the panel of experts here can help the committee to lead and begin to shape bipartisan lresponsibility to this nationl security threat. thank you, mr. chairman. >> before he moved to the testimony from eyewitnesses and housekeeping after testimony, members will be recognized for fivel minutes by seniority andi will hold that to five minutess today. we have five those that are scheduled for 11:00 a.m. make sure that all members today are able to ask these witnesses their questions. i would ask members that when you need to leave to vote would you be expeditious and coming back if you're in the?
to ask questions in the chair will work with each one of you to let you know where you can just be be in the sequence. the chair will announce he's going to miss the first two votes tose stay here and keep te continuity of the hearing so that we can get through as many members as they possibly can. but that, dr. helmus will recognize you and go from your right to left. dr. helmus, the floor is yours geared thank you, mr. chairman. good morning, chairman burke, fishermen wonder and established members of the committee for the invitation to testify at this important hearing. russia is a nation worldwide propaganda campaign. one focus for the campaign is in russia's own backyard in the former soviet states ofss easten europe. in addition to a propaganda war in ukraine, russia disseminating propaganda to russian speakers in the baltics in nearbyai stat. their goal is to drive a wedge between these russian speakers
in their host nation the north atlantic treaty organization and the european union. to do this, russia uses social media accounts. they also synchronize such tools for their safe on a television network, online news portals and an army of regional proxies that some called useful. the rand study i will talklk abt today about how defenders to the pro-russia outreach and social media by focusing on the region that includes estonia, lithuania, latvia, ukraine, belarus. our research team sought to help advance the baltics they can shed light on how to combat this issue around the globe. my written testimony highlights the methods and key findings from my report before today's testimony of focus on five key recommendations. first the need to further develop and track and target russian propaganda effort to take any action in social media operations is critical to
identify and track at it in real-time. this will require analytic advancements of computers can distinguish between authentic social media chatter and the adversarial campaigns that are to come. second, it's important to highlight entire russian propaganda. the approach by international organizations involved websites or e-mail alerts which reach activists are members of the policy community. instead the research team argues it's important to have a propaganda in ways that are much faster fw and target at-risk audiences. one example is the google ad that improve the speed and targeting of counter messaging and using video and other content in google search results to educate people who search for russian born pages on google. third, expand and improve access to local and original content. one challenge particularly in the baltics' moscow controlled media especially tv is a dominant source of information for many russian speakers in the
region. policy should not so much counter the rush of narrative as to displace it more entertaining and active content. the team argues for training journalists come increasing access to russian language television programming such as current time in highlighting the eccentric voice of local influencers. forthcoming u.s., nato and e.u. must do a better job of doinger their story. they showed it offer a compelling argument for russian speaking populations to align withop the west or individual nation states to which they w belong. nato should more effectively communicate the purpose and intent of its infantry battalions now stationed in the baltics. finally, there is a need to resilience and targeted populations. this will include long-term implement media literacy training and integrate such training in there classroo. public information campaign that the concept of media literacy in the wrist to russian propaganda may also be
necessary. thank you once again for inviting me and i look forward to taking your questions. >> thank you, dr. helmus. thank you, mr. chairman. for giving me the opportunity to testify today. i am trained to a nicety compositional propaganda. socialat media hoax has been a high-stakes information work. we discuss counter messaging, treating this as a problem to solve stories read an attack on information ecosystem. inre the missing arms raced. which an stability for the integrity of public discourse is largely in the hands of social platforms and and determined adversaries continually find new ways to manipulate features and circumvent measures. computational propaganda andin not abouttion is arbitrating truth nor question of free speech. its information warfare, cybersecurity issues must be addressed at operation between governments responsibility for the safety of citizens and
private industry for the integrity of platforms. why narratives have existed for a very long time but today's influence operations there materiallyue different because e propaganda shared reference on popular social platforms is officially amplified by algorithms. adversaries in the popular consensus created on platforms such as youtube, read it in countries and twitter and facebook with audiences and hundreds of millions and the most receptive. getting algorithms take they can't think of ireland have the added benefit of coverage on traditional channels including television and operation with content with wide distribution, recommendations and search engine server to. we are here because the internet research agency employed this playbook and began around 2013 and can need for the 2016 election and increased on some platforms such as instagram and twitter in 2017.
the operation reach hundreds of millions of users across rather,, youtube, tumbler andat media. websites created to push content about everything from social issues to concerns about war from the environment e.g. a mostly twitter account aspirated as localci news stations coming facebook events promoted in activists were contacted tersely be a messenger to take the operation to the streets. twitter accounts of this webpage associated with the ira remain active today. the focus of the campaign was to wait social and racial tension despite the claim that the content platform is not targeted to in effect are the appellation in the majority related to the importance of the black community, officer bob shooting at hundreds of thousands of americans with names and the amount of explicitly political content in 2016 with small unit fighting negativity trades secretary clinton and incontinentto t targeted to mess
and depressing turnout particularly among black voters are painting secretary clinton in a negative light compared to joe's diner bernie sanders that the social networks that host the campaigner in a position. the irony was not the only adversary to target american citizens online. the co-opting of social networks reach mainstream awareness and 2014 as isis established against all social platforms for the debate about what to do about it is obvious no one was in charge. the confusion continues as the critics dance. "the wall street journal" revealed a private intelligence company marketed their ability to conduct similar influences the 2016 election. social platforms have begun to take steps to reduce the spread of disinformation. the steps from several of which inspired by hearing from the chamber a good start. they determined adversaries intact x. wean will anticipate an will anticipate an increase in the use of encrypted messaging service is.
the weighting their unwitting from state actors or filter propaganda. new technologies such as video and audio to supplement these operations make it increasingly difficult. thisof problem is on the definig traits of our generation. influence m operations at weight divisions in our society is in vulnerabilities and information ecosystem. they take advantage of our commitment to freedom of speech and free flow of ideas at the platform cannot and should not be the sole defenders of democracy and public discourse. we recommend immediate action to identify and eliminate and educate the public in preparation for the 2010on elections. we recommend a doctor at the clinic relegation within the u.s. government. we believe the platforms must be held accountable to ensure they do their utmost to mitigate the problem and privacy of an oversight is key. finally we need structures and cooperation from information
sharing between the public and private areas. formal partnerships between researchers and the government will be essential to defending values, democracy and society. in closing could thank you for the opportunity to participate in thisvalu conversation. >> thank you, ms. renee diresta. dr. kelly. >> chairman burr, vice chairman warner, members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to discuss the weaponization of our social media platforms. the data now available make it clear the russian efforts are notco direct it against one election or one party or one country. we are facing a sustained campaign with organized manipulation, coordinated attack on the trust we place in our institutions and media for social and traditional. they are sophisticated and complex than the bipartisan work to untangle and expose them such a great example for the country. i'm a social scientist and ceo of a marketing analytics for
embedded advanced techniques for understanding the flow of information online. my experience with fresh and online communities began 10 years ago when i helped later research effort at harvard center for internet and society. we observed the online political discussion evolved from a vigorously cover gimmick voices and viewpoints to a network with automated accounts and organize programmaticly trolling. in short for the past several years russian government has been doing to us with a first at home in eastern europe a decade ago. we know this because an of indispensable work by aroro wide range of journalists, academic researchers, grassroots organizations all conducted a great personal risks. for more than a decade groups have documented playbooks to spread chaos and discord online. these techniques include crafting fit issues online personas to infiltrate communities can infiltrate
radical political communities on both sides to enhance mutual distrust targeting both sides of the country's most divisive issues, making pop-culture references and discourse to influence young minds using inorganic amplification launching cyberattacks in conjunction with informationco operations. again, each one of these features are the russian government's attack against the public was first tested and deployed against their own people and refined to target their enemies abroad. thanksks to the great work of te committee and the cooperation of social media platforms coming data documenting the research agency's u.s. focused effort in 2016 has now been released to the public. many dissertations will be written on the data but today i want to highlight three points. first of a russian manipulation did not stop in 2016. after election day the russian government stepped on the gas. accounts operated became more active after the election confirming the assault of the
democratic process is much bigger than the attack on the single election. second, they are targeting both sides of political spectrum simultaneously before the 2016 election in right now. the same russian organization will use sophisticated personas and automated amplification on the left in the right in an attempt to an already divided landscape you're darker landscape is vulnerable to these sorts of attacks. an arrest may come in the automated accounts, the far left and far right extremes produces 25 to 30 times the number of messages perer day on average a genuine political accounts across the mainstream. ..na
american journalist has a responsibility to harden itself to this manipulation. the platform's proactive transparency will be critical to informing public debate how to strengthen our democracy in face of threats. there are significant challenges ahead of us and unfortunately knowing the other team's play book. detecting these efforts before they've had intended effect and agreeing how to address them remains a formidable challenge. on the technological front our field is making progress on technical markers that distinguish true grass roots from fabricated campaigns and research is yielding manipulations before they gain momentum. it's important to keep our values front and center in the work. freedom of expression and protecting user privacy.
it will take skilled women and men professionally dedicated to this task and investment in the development of tools and methods to first catch up and then stay ahead in our race to defend america's social fabric from the new 21st century warfare. institutions in the technology centers can only do so much in the face of it. the responsibility lies with government to make sure that any state actor eager to manipulate and harass faces consequences for their actions. it's not just bots attacking us and not just algorithms that must protect us. this committee will take a tremendous step forward in what will undoubtedly be a long process and i commend its leaderships, and bipartisan spirit. thank you for the opportunity to testify today. >> thank you. >> thank you. i've submitted my full statement for the record, but
let me highlight a couple of of key points to address them. the health and strength of our democracy depends on americans ability to engage freely in political speech, to hold debates free from manipulation and obtain issues of the day. i commend you as a national security professional who has watched social media and platforms be weaponized to attack these foundations of our democracy. i watched from inside the national security council when russia test drove these approaches in u ukraine as our government struggled to understand them and respond and watched from the campaign trail in 2016 as your government was surprised that these tools were used against american democracy. and it preceded that attack as a failure of imagination. i believe the failure to detect and disrupt russia's government was a failure to imagine not just by the government, but by
those who ought to understand these tools best, their creators. thanks in part to the bipartisan work of this committee we know that russian linked government actors used a range of means to manipulate the on-line space using every social media and on-line platform to amplify, encourage action off line, undermine institutions insinuate themselves to target audiences in order to influence public debates on geopolitics and spread hacked information and it's not just the internet. research agencies, we know russian military officers used fake personas and websites and the united states is not the only target. the chinese government has begun to use social media outside of its borders. our authoritarian adversaries are using these because controlling the information space is a powerful mean to undermine institutions and
against their geopolitical goals. meaningful actions to close these off by the public sector and government are lacking. and we're missing what's happening and what will happen again. what may have once been a failure to imagine is now a failure to act. fundamentally, this is not a content problem. this is a deliberate manipulation of the information space by actors with malicious intent engaging in deceptive behavior. transparency and exposure of manipulating is critical to their effectiveness and deterring it. but tech companies have remained reluctant to share information. their focus cannot be on public relations campaigns. it needs to be on detailing r ref-- nefario nefarious. transparency is critical for accountability and outside researchers need greater access to data in a manner that protects users privacy.
users need more context about the origin of information and why they see it, including disclosure of of animated accounts. identifying malicious actors includes sharing data between the public and private sectors and among technology companies. and efforts along these lines are welcomed, but need to be streamlined and institutionalized and protect privacy and speech. we need to identify threats in new technology before they are exploited. ai exposes tools to combat the problem as well as new ways to make it work such as deep space. they need to close off vulnerabilities exploited that applies the same standards to political ads on-line that ally offline. manipulation of social media is one strategy to weaken. and there's a blueprint for
countering these endorsed by a group of former national security officials. including deterrent warnings to foreign actors for the consequences. government needs to expose foreign interference and executive branch would ensure that politics are not a consideration. we need to harden measures through secure elections acts. more broadly, the government needs a unified and integrated approach, including through a counter foreign interference security center. and finally, this is a transnational challenge and essential that we work closely with allies and partners to share information about threats and collaborate on responses. distinguished members, there are steps that we can take today to make our democracy more security. we need to come together cross
across party lines to address this challenge. putin's strategy is to weaken us as a country. standing together has never been more important. >> thank you. dr. howard? >> thank you, chairman burr and vice-chairman warren. my name is phil howard. i'm a professor at oxford university and director of the oxford institute of department and department at oxford. my own area of expertise includes political communication and international affairs. at the institute i've been leading a project on propaganda currently funded by the european research counsel and something that, research initiative that started with the national science foundation in this country. i began working on these questions in 2010, but the project really grew in the summer of 2014 when the malaysian airlines flight was shot down over ukraine and in hungary where i was based at
the moment, at that time, many of my hungarian friends got multiple ridiculous stories about what happened. we knew these came from russian sources. there was one story that democracy advocates had shot the plane down because they thought that putin was flying on commercial from amsterdam to malays malaysia. there was a story that the americans had shot it down because they had stationed troops in ukraine and the favorite story was the lost tank from world war ii that came out of the great forest of ukraine and was confused and shot the plane down. it was at that moment that we realized the thrust of russian propaganda was not so much of placing one counter narrative and placing that among the public, but multiple, sometimes equally ridiculous stories and placing those in the public. what we did not expect is that russia would turn this campaign strategy on america, on the
other great democracies in the west. i'm going to tell you a little about what we've learned over the last few years about the form of these computational propaganda campaigns and what i expect for 2018 and perhaps the words ahead. we coined the term computational propaganda, it makes use of the technology built. and makes use of algorithms to distribute targeted propaganda, including falsely packaged news, misinformation, illegal data harvesting, hacking, a range of techniques that goes into backing computational propaganda and thee kinds of campaigns that tend to target voters. there are campaigns to polarize on issues. and russia media council by united muslims of america or
political activity around black lives matter and encourage others to support the blue lives matter movement. the goal is to get groups of voters to confront each other angrily not only over social media, but in the streets. second there are campaigns to promote or discredit political candidates and other political figures. it's not new, but targeted in a way that is new. third and perhaps most worrying for democracy, is that some of these campaigns discourage voters from voting. voter suppression is a common messaging technique aimed at voters whose support for a candidate that a foreign government might find unpalatable. voters are often told that voting day has been postponed or text message their vote in or that the polling station has moved, but it has not. in the case of the united states, these campaigns are ongoing. months after the last major election in the u.s., our team
demonstrated the disinformation about national security issues, including information from russian sources was targeted at u.s. military personnel, veterans and their families. during the president's state of the union address, we demonstrated that junk news, some of which originates from foreign governments, is particularly advertising for the far right, white supremacists and president trump supporters though notably not small conservatives. our team completed a global inventory of many of these campaigns and while many of us talk about russia, the original was to track what the russians and chinese have done in this domain. so far we have not documented much chinese activity. we know that they spend time working in taiwan and believe they have capacity, but as of yet haven't set american voters in their sights. we have found in this most
recent inventory that there are 48 countries in the world with large political parties or government agencies running misinformation campaigns, either on their own voters, or on voters in other countries. there are seven authoritarian governments, aside from russia, that spend money in this domain. and overall, i would say it's time for democracies to develop their own cybersecurity strategies. i'll be happy to discuss the possibilities going forward. >> dr. howard, thank you very much. i'm reminded after listening to all of the testimony that the 1960's strategies of russia were simple. it's bad for america, it must be good for us. and it seems like this is rooted in the same foundational strategic vision that they had then. the chair would recognize himself for five minutes. i'm going to ask all of you to follow my chart over there. i just want to get your
comments relative to whether this is accurate or not. the red line represents the russian activities of the ira, twitter activity, and relative to outside the united states, the blue line is u.s. focused ira activities. it shows a huge spike up in the 14-15 time frame, which was the invasion of the ukraine. the next two jobs of the line up, 15-16 and crimea. and the regional politics in belarus specifically. and then the specific blue line of the united states. i think the fascinating thing here is that the spike is in 17 and 18 which tells us--
and correct me if i'm wrong, the activity was more in the leadup to the election. am i misreading that? so, doctor, let me ask you th this, is it possible for the mainstream media today to run a story that was the creation of an effort by the ira that had no factual basis, but over the transition of how their strategies work, it gained enough coverage of belief that people had read it, that it got so big that it had to have been real? is that possible? >> i believe it is possible. i think the goal of these information operations over the
long-term is to condition the public and to weave the network, so to speak, that later you can use it to move any sort of story. remember, a key feature of propaganda -- if you're running a propaganda out fit, you're taken seriously and then slip in the wrong thing at exactly the right time. i believe that's what they've done is cultivate a set of sources as authoritative and content that's often about kim kardashian. and then they become in mainstream in the social media and then at that time they can move anything they want through it. >> and is it the individuals that contribute to that theme that's on a social media platform, in many cases americans responding, that gives it credibility? and are they knowing or unknowing as to what they're participating in? do you have a strategy on that? >> that -- certainly i agree
that there's no borders on social media, no borders on media today. so, certainly content that's disseminated by one source is picked up by another. in looking at eastern europe there's issues with fundamental media and could lead to that type of issue of bringing content that's false or otherwise untrue into reality. >> you said, correct me if i'm wrong, ira pages stay active today? >> yes, sir, i believe that's true and twitter accounts that were associated with ira bot-nets with the ability to be turned back on at some time. >> so with all the efforts by the justice department at targeting, by the public acknowledgment and indictment of individuals, the ira has not
gone away? >> no, sir. >> their capabilities, and comment on it this, if you will, their capabilities, relative to facebook's latest disclosure may have gotten significantly better? >> one thing that's a very big, significant challenge is attribution. so we can attribute this to the ira. i read the same news as you read yesterday and don't have inside information there. my understanding they believe it was the ira based on image i am similarity and tactic similarity. what changed they paid in u.s. dollars and canadian dollars so they are no longer paying in rubles, probably no longer using ip addresses tied to russia. slight increases and operational security that will make them more difficult to detect. the other thing, as attribution, particularly for outsiders that don't have access to that level, what we call metadata, perhaps could
make it look like an ira-- >> individual or nation state? >> individual or nation state. >> thank you. vice-chairman. >> thank you all for your testimony. a couple of things, one, we're mostly talking about the ira activity, as opposed to what we don't know in terms of other russian activities. and we do know the ira with the revelations of yesterday have gotten better and we're going to still need to figure out their trade craft and one thing we need from the expertise like you, i feel like when the platform companies are going in the right direction, they're only looking at their own universe, their own platform. i think, mr. kelly, you said something that i think was the singlemost stunning line, on
the political content, 20, to 30 times more of that content is being generated by bots and automated accounts rather than individuals, is that correct? >> yes, senator, that's correct. if you look at the american political spectrum and at the array of set of politically oriented twitter accounts on an axis, one side that only talks to people of their own stripe and on the other the other stripe, and most americans are in between connect today some on right and left, those on either extreme of that network are shouting with automated amplification. >> so with that a lot of. let me state for the record, i've had some of these conversations with you in the past. there are very appropriate and effective roles for automated accounts and bots in certain cases. but i guess what i would start with rosenberg and dr. kelly on
this. shouldn't we have a right to know whether the content is coming from a human being rather than an automated account, recognizing there is good value in some automated accounts? >> yes, i believe that context of information is critical for consumers of the information to be able to evaluate it. when we talk about critical meaning, it's whole new characters when we talk about on-line content. having information about the origin of information whether or not that content is served up through an automated process why consumers are seeing that information. i believe that's critical. one thing i think is important in this conversation is to assure that we protect the anonymity on-line, which is essential for democratic activists in authoritarian states, but i believe deeply there is ways to identify automation without compromising the ability for users, real users to be anonymous. >> dr. kelly, do you want to-- >> well, we have to recognize
that automation is performing a lot more functions on-line more than russian propaganda. call green things we like and red things we don't like makes it hard without being able to know who is running that robot, to know who is using it for good or bad. >> dr. howard, did you want to weigh in on this? >> could we analogize to the markets, with huge advantages to high frequency traders, the markets in terms of making sure they're not totally-- put in speed bumps. if the market jumps one way or another, there are speed bumps that allow, in a sense, human activity. within the 25, 30 times are automation. if there are stories that are trending at an enormously rapid
rate and they have enormous automation driving that story, could there be some kind of timeout so you could accompany-- or an entity could evaluate whether this is actual, not actual, something looks phony here, fishy here? any of you on that comment? >> i think that the parallel is spot on. as an issue of information and they need to address the core of the narrative and what we should be looking at is addressing the dissemination patterns. >> i think that's well-put. >> one thing to keep in mind, again, automation is running all kinds of things. it's not just pushing russian propagan propaganda. it's pushing american speech and pop music, marketing around
music. and-- >> i'll make the comment that it doesn't come with good or bad attached, but i guess, i just think as a human being, i ought to have that knowledge of whether that message is being promoted to me by a human being or by automation. and i know my time is up. i just want to come back and asking ms. rosenberger on the next round, could we deal with that anonymity. and if we could say that someone is in a different location. >> dr. howard, did you want to add? >> the possibility to have these accounts subidentify with b-o-t, bot in the name. that kind of disclosure is what helps users separate good content from the bad. >> senator wray. >> i think the take away from this is something that's troubled me from the beginning and that is how difficult this
is. we know the problem. we have bad actors putting up bad information. the difficulty is, how do you segregate those people who are doing this from americans who have the right to do this? i've looked at the stuff that-- as everybody has -- that is part of this, but, yet, if you take one of those piece, any one of them individually, and looked at it, and said we just discovered who is doing this, it's john doe and he is from new jersey, there's nothing illegal about it. it may be disgusting, it may be untrue, it may be with a bad motive, but there's nothing that -- indeed is protected by the first amendment of the constitution. how do you separate that person from someone who is doing the same thing, but coming from russia, but whose motives ato enhance russia by pulling down
america. how do you police that? and i think part of the question that senator warner asked about putting a-- putting a speed bump in so somebody can evaluate this, i mean, that kind of puts -- i want to be the evaluator. and i think most everybody does, and that's the problem. and then you talked about protecting anonymity. how do you -- how can you protect anonymity if you're actually going to do something against someone who is doing something that we don't want done? these are extremely difficult questions and i appreciate all the kind things you've said about this is bipartisan and we all need to come together, et cetera, et cetera. we all agree with that, how in the world do you do this. the take away, this is just an enormous, if not an impossible thing. mr. helmus, your thoughts?
>> yes, i agree, that's the fundamental question. in our research we identified upwards of 40,000 accounts centered around ukraine that are putting out vo siciferousvo anti-campaign. otherwise might be free speech. that's challenged our bot detectors and-- there are bot detectors that can detect some content characteristics of bots. it's an arms race that developer develop bots based on inhuman levels of content, tweets, what have you. the producers will identify other ways of circumventing that.
it's an arms race and i think it will require content research and development of new techniques. >> what you're describing is a significant problem for researchers as well. we look at information operations, trying to gauge attribution or whether it's organic or not. >> what do you do about it when you get the attribution? >> we try to look at the content, has it appeared elsewhere? is it affiliated with past ira operations or coming from somewhere else? we look at the origin. we look at the content, are they bots and look at the dissemination pattern, does it look like it's artificially amplyfied, run through accounts, groups or pages that seem dubious. we try to flash things for platforms as well. we believe in transparent
communication, this is what we're seeing, what are you seeing? they have access to metadata and account information and e-mail addresses and phones numbers, people have registered accounts with and that's also a significant part of the investigation of the operation. there is no easy answer to this question. this is the primary challenge and this is where we see, even influence operations going towards laundering narratives, either through the unwitting or through participants. it's a hard problem. >> the analysis that you're talking about, you're looking for all of these things, but you'll find, i assume, some actors, what we would consider bad actors, but, yet, some actors we'd consider good actors, whether it was a u.s. government operation or something. who makes the determination as to who is a good actor or a bad actor? that's what i really struggle with. >> and i think that-- >> dr. kelly, why don't you get your two sense in, if you don't mind. >> thank you, senator. >> it's hard to track what is
fake and who is behind it. you need to understand who is behind it tracking the actors. that who makes a determination who is against our interest and who it doesn't matter. once you have that, it's up to government and other appropriate folks to figure out the response. i think to do that detection in the first place requires an enormous amount of data and sophisticated methods of analysis and it's not just data from one platform. it's not just internally, it's through multiple sources. it gets to your extremely important questions, who makes these determinations and who has the right to see that private data. i think that we have to look at a model like cybersecurity firms and we know it will be secure handling that data. we need some sort of facility like that. >> this is different than
cybersecurity. you don't want anybody entering private space and this you want everybody entering. and my time is up. thank you, mr. chairman. >> senator feinstein. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank facebook for deleting pages and 290,000 accounts on the basis that russia and other outside actors are continuing to weaponize social media platforms. i'm very pleased that facebook took this action and i hope that all social media platforms continue to influence russia's media campaign. i have no question that it's going on and i have no question that it's related to more than just election interference. let me ask this question, since the 2016 election ended how
many ira accounts have any of you found that are still active? >> dr. kelly? >> we've been doing some work on this. we went and looked, i mean, that list of accounts is extremely valuable. we look for live accounts using open source research tools and we found a great deal of accounts directed to the closed accounts across numerous platforms. >> can you put a number on it. >> the sample we've look at far are, 28% are connected to at least one live account on a different platforms and we know that those are connected to numerous twitter accounts and we think of this, what we have here is the tentacles of an octopus. we don't know how far out the arm of that octopus is cut. >> how about russia's account? >> the russian account evident in this data.
>> right. >> presumably these are ira accounts, too, and they've got a tentacle wagging in russia as well and i don't know how much of their effort this represents. >> does anybody else on the panel have a comment on this subject matter? >> yes. >> please, doctor. >> thank you, senator. my comment would be it's the social media firms who have that information. we do our best, juggling probabilities and percentages to make best guesses about what kinds of account. some of these accounts occasionally slip into cyrillic and back and some give away, but it's the social media that has the best on this information. >> facebook alleged that ira its activity alone 126 million people and that doesn't include instagram or twitter. what can you say to the extent which the ira activity reached real americans? >> i can say that it was
significant, yet, also concentrated in swing states. >> i'm sorry, concentrated in-- >> swing states during the 2016 election. so particular states got more of this kind of content than others. >> what was the time you looked at that to draw that conclusion. >> it was from the beginning of the presidential debates through to a few days after election day. >> have you looked at it now? >> not in the last few months, no. >> can you estimate the number of americans touched by russian-linked activity in this area? >> no, that is very difficult to do. >> can anybody? yes, please go ahead. >> now, i just want actually to add a small data point to this. we spent a lot of time talking about facebook and twitter, but as renee highlighted and others noted this is a problem of the entire information eco system. this is cross-platform. reddit confirmed hundreds of
ira-created accounts. tumblr did it and that was used to target the african-american community particularly. so this is why it's difficult to quantify in any meaningful way the reach of these activities, because this is across the entire eco system, not to mention as others were highlighting, how this information gets picked up and then transmitted and amplyfied through mainstream media outlets. >> let me ask you, when information becomes a weapon, does anybody see any need to change the environment to prevent this from happening? >> i believe that many of us were advocating doing that, when it became clear that isis turned the media into a weapon. unfortunately the dialog between the government and platforms and researchers was not necessarily where it needed to be. there were a handful that tried. there was the global engagement
center that was established and tied up in funding more apps and we're not really clear what the status of that is. and there was an establishment of the global internet through terrorism. and to the best of miage know that's not staffed as much as a repository of condititent. to answer your earlier question with one other point. we did see when the house released the ads that the ads were demographically and geographically targeted. the number of people who saw that content only the platforms have access to that content. we could engage the number of followers that did follow the russia pages, in the neighborhood of a couple hundred thousand on the largest pages. >> thanks. my time it up. >> senator collins. >> thank you, mr. chairman. dr. kelly, you have a very profound statement in your
testimony. you said russian efforts are not directed against one election, one party, or even one country. what are russia's ultimate goals? is it to undermine the public's faith in western democracies and so weakens the bonds that unite us, that there are students for russia? >> yes, senator, i believe that's actually correct. i think they have long-term strategic goals which include weakening western institutions in faith and democracy and traditional sources of information and authority. that's the strategic goal and then a lot of near and short-term goals, things like injecting hacked information to sway a particular event or election and they're doing that activity all around their periphery and now here. >> ms. direcstra, both of you
said it did not stop in 2016. you, doctor kelly, said that russia stepped on the gas and increased its activity and miss diresta, you said that russian efforts increased post-election to promote racial tensions in our country. we impose sanctions on russia. they seemed to have done no good when it comes to this kind of activity. what can we do beyond educating the public to counter russia more effectively? miss diresta, i would start with you. >> i would say one of the things we need to do is evaluate our informations doctrine, jp 313, i believe
that senator warner alluded to this in policy proposals. and addressing the scale of sophistication and scale of operations, which is something as a government we haven't looked at that in quite some time and perhaps that would be a place to start. >> dr. kelly. >> i think there's a technical component, detect and attribute the activities so you can authoritatively prove it's happening and then take action. >> dr. howard, i want to get to something you said, and that was you gave us several compelling examples from your hungarian experience where they received, clearly, false stories that were intended to explain the downing of the malaysian airline and what's interesting to me is based on
dr. kelly's testimony, it isn't just the hungarian press that is being manipulated or infiltrated or controlled, but we've seen evidence where america's media is also being targeted. and dr. kelly pointed out that the russian persona of jenna abrams, who has accounts on multiple platforms, was cited by more than 40 u.s. journalists before being unmasked. how can the media be more sensitive or more aware, more on guard to being manipulated in this way? >> thank you, senator. the united states actually has the most professionalized media in the world. it's learned, certainly, to evaluate their sources, no longer report tweets as given.
so, i would say that in this country, the most professional news outlets are already on the defense. they're already -- already have ways to ensure that the quality of the news product isn't shaped by this kind of disinformation campaigns. i would say the greater concerns would be among the media institutes in our democratic allies. i believe they've moved from us to brazil, india, other enormous democracies running elections in the next few years. while we still see russian activity, those countries have the media institutions that need to learn, need to develop. >> miss rosenberger? >> thank you, senator. i would add that this is not a problem that we have overcome. we have one example of an ira-created twitter account. the hash-- i'm sorry, woke louisa, particularly for those focused
on the nfl's take a knee debate, on both sides of the debate. that twitter with two dozen stories from news outlets. >> bbc, time, warner, huffington post and bet. this was four months ago so we really need to make sure that this information is not getting laundered into the broader system which is part of the strategy here. >> and the issue there, when we read it in a credible source we're likely to believe. >> that's exactly right, it gives it that much more credibility. >> thank you. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank all of you. it seems to me for now and for the forseeable future protecting america's private data is going to be a national security usual.
there was abuse of american's information. i believe a significant part of the failure is the fact that the federal trade commission doesn't have the authority or the resources to be a tougher cop on the beat. and i'm going to be rolling out a plan to fix that in the weeks ahead. now, let me go to questions. ms. diresta, your testimony referenced the russian facebook pages in 2016 targeting both the right and the left, but you noted it was the pages targeting the left that included not only content intended to appeal to its audience, but also, content intended to suppress the vote, and be critical of secretary clinton. in your view, does the apparent russian content released yesterday by facebook, resemble the content the russians used
last time to attract an audience on the left and among racial minorities, which the russians then used to suppress their vote? >> yes, sir, it does. there's a strong component of cultural posts that appear in communities and pages targeting minority voters. a lot of pride, pride-related content, less news, more memes and that reflects what we saw yesterday. >> well, i appreciate that because content targeting, i think, is clearly going to be a big part of the challenge. the public's got to be aware of it because not all russian propaganda's going to get caught and americans are inevitably going to read some of it, particularly if it's consistent with what they already believe. so i gather what you're saying, miss diresta, the public has got to be alert to a repeat of the 2016 russian playbook which was to attract an audience on
the left. discourage them from voting and that could mean attacking democratic candidates, pushing the line, in fact, so that the russians are trying to make it possible that our votes don't matter. is that essentially your concern? >> yes, sir, there's a lot of efforts to push intra-party divisions on the left. >> let me ask you now, if i could, maybe for you miss diresta, ms. rosenberg, dr. kelly, about this concept known as down-ranking. my interest here for folks from the medical companies there's a mismatch of incentives. the social media companies, they want users and clicks and impressions and inflammatory and often false content creates that. so, even when the companies can't or haven't decided to identify a certain account, either foreign or nefarious,
they can still downgrade the posts to limit their exposure. this is an equal or worse problem with conspiracy in the news and foreign influence. my question here for the three of you. down these down-ranking programs are effective or things that ought to be considered part of the kind of toolbox as we look to deal with this problem, miss diresta, and the rest of us. >> yes, i think there are three facts to the box, reduce, remove, inform. inform add additional context to the post and this is facebook's frame work. reduce would be something to down-rank it per the question is it possible to inject friction. this is where down-ranking could be used as a tool to attribution and authenticity is established to reduce the reach of contest and remove is the
most extreme. >> would any of you like to add anything? yes. >> i'd like to know that we talk about down-ranking. but we forget that up ranking is part of the process. >> you're being way too logical. >> these platforms are not neutral, information is not being served without some kind of algorithm deciding for most of the platforms, without an algorithm, basically deciding what is served up at the top. so, when we talk about down-ranking, we have to start from the premises that up-ranking is baked in the cake. the question becomes, are these platforms somehow actually prioritizing, bad, malicious information, right, that as we know and as others mentioned in their testimony, gaming these algorithms. whether that's on trying to get certain content to trend or, frankly, getting certain contents to rise to the top of google searches, something that we know that--
>> i'm over my time. i just want to be clear. as the author of section 230, the days when these pipes are continued neutral are over because the whole point of 230 was to have a shield and a sword and the sword hadn't been used and the pipes are not neutral. >> senator blunt. >> thank you. so much of the activity on the charts in the days largely of the ira. what percentage of russian-linked activity would you april that the ira represents? is this half of everything of half they did, 10%, who has had a sense of what we're looking at when we're looking at ira activity? >> we've looked at a number of known disinformation campaigns and we think that these the ira folks are involved in the minority of them. >> in a minority of them?
do you think that would be the case of them here as well? >> i do. the only thing we don't know is how much of the ira this is. miss rosenberger, do you want to comment on that? >> i would only add that we know from special counsel mueller's indictment actually of the gru, there's one section that notes that gru operatives utilize social media accounts and fake websites they created in order to spread hacked information and weaponized information so we certainly know there are other actors. gru is probably better hiding its tracks than the ira is, so i think it speaks again to how this is probably just one tip of the iceberg of what we're looking at. >> so, the early discussion clearly has moved from what the russians were paying for, which appears to be a very small fraction of the impact they were having. does anybody disagree with
that? that is clearly -- and this ira activity is some fraction of the russian activity in 2016-17 and into 18? is that would be -- so i think the indictment, the mueller indictment said that there were probably at least 80 ira employees involved and millions of dollars involved in that effort. i don't know what, is that five millions of dollars, or hundred million? what kind of -- what amount of money do you think the russians invested in this effort that was covered by the mueller indictment? he uses the term millions of dollars. that could mean a lot of different things. any idea of the activity you've looked at, what kind of investment of money and how many people may have been
involved in this? >> we've done that audit globally. we believe that half a billion dollars has been spent by the 40 governments that we've studied since 2010. in the russian case, we think it's around 200 million u.s. over this extended period for the full set of organizations behind the various campaigns. >> and was it-- doctor, on that topic, in the other countries that you've looked at, who should we be looking at after russia that are likely impacting our daily conversation in the country in some ranked order? who would be the top three or four countries that you would believe would be most actively out there doing what russia is also doing? >> well, in our research, we look at turkey, china, hungary, and iran. >> doctor kelly, do you have a thought on that? >> we believe there's a growing
black market in people skilled who have these dark arts and are employing them in their own country and hiring in other countries. so it's a critical challenge because the russians may have been the first to effectively do this, but they're not the only players and you'll have a black market of players who are mobile and can be hired by any actor. >> it's to be sure i understand, doctor. of the 40 countries, of these 40 countries you've looked at for outside activity or 40 countries that are participating in this kind of activity? >> these are 40 countries that have organized disinformation campaigns in the sense of stable personnels with telephones and family benefits. these are formal organizations that do this, would. >> and how many countries do you think those 40 countries would be trying to influence activity in? >> in seven countries. >> seven countries? >> seven authoritarian regimes that have dedicated budgets for disinformation campaigns targeting voters in other
countries. >> and how many other countries, again? >> our audit of government expenditures covers 40 in total. it's usually the united states, canada, australia, the u.k. that are-- germany that are the targets. >> that are the targets. on dr. kelly's comment about determining attribution, you know, we have a -- in our country we focused on defense, no administration has yet figured out what our offense should be. and i think one of those reasons is, we have not figured out with certainty how we would determine where a cyberattack came from, as opposed to cyber information, what we're seeing here is a vulnerability social media infrastructure that may be every bit as critical infrastructure as any of the
other infrastructure we're trying to protect. i'm going to let you have the last answer to my questions. >> senator, i would just note on that, that russia is playing to asymmetric advantage. this is a low cost, high reward kind of tactic. we need to also evaluate with our own asymmetric advantage is and sometimes that's not responding symmetricically. when it comes to russia, why imposing costs in the financial space in particular. putin cares most about his power and his power rests on his money. i think that looking at ways that we can dry up the sources of funding both for these activities, as well as for the regimes that are using them is incredibly important when it comes to china, reputational costs are important. this is why it's important that we put this information on the national security front in a broader strategic frame, to identify our own asymmetric
advantages so we can go on offense. >> senator? >> miss rosenberger, i believe it was you who said-- and i may be paraphrasing here, we've moved from a failure of imagination to a failure to act. do you find it troubling that despite the current risk, despite the quickly approaching 2018 midterms, that concrete responses like the security elections act, like the honest ads act have not been developed for a vote in the united states senate? >> yes, senator, i do believe that while this is a complex problem, there are some clear stats that we can take in particular on the defensive side, as well as on the deterrent side that we need to be taking urgently. >> i share that concern because i think some of these things are sitting right in front of us, and we just need to make it a priority. for miss diresta, and dr.
kelly, the internet focused on standing division, was the singlemost category. are russian warfare using this as a weapon to weaken the united states? >> yes, i believe they are. >> absolutely. >> do you see that ongoing exploitation of racial tensions as a direct threat to our national security and for that matter, our cohesiveness as a country? >> you could think of this as a social cohesion attack to drive wedges into the american public. maybe a wedge of history being used to exploit and make it look more like 1950's america. >> i agree. >> we now know about the russian 2016 campaign after we
started the investigation. we know it was far broader than we originally thought and highly activity today as many of you have testified to and we know that no single entity by itself, not the government, not social media companies, not civil society could effectively stop foreign influence in social media. miss rosenberger, have we as a nation had had behavior that would defer russia from acting this way or have they gotten a pass in terms of the price that we have chosen and that administration has chosen to extract? >> i think that it's evident by the fact that this kind of activity continues that we have not yet effectively deterred it. one thing i would note in classic deterrence theory, two prongs, one credibility and one is capability.
it's important, number one, that on the credibility front that we have very clear, consistent messages from across the government and all the way down. >> including the white house. >> including the white house, that this behavior will not be tolerated and that will be consequences for it going forward and articulating what those consequences will be. i think there's a role for congress to play here in terms of teeing up triggers that would be automatic and i know there is consideration of such measures and i welcome that, but i think that it also has to start-- the credibility piece has to be very, very clear. vladimir putin cannot see from one place that is a potential for consequences, but over here get a very mixed message. we have to have a consistency, credibility coupled with the capability to act. >> i do not agree more. and you mentioned financial cost as one of the -- of our
asymmetrical advantages. what do you see the potential cost that we might extract for this kind of ongoing misbehavior? >> i think there's two different ways of looking at it. one is for targeted sanctions and designations. the other is thinking more broadly how our financial system, the person-- western financial system, is hiding the money that they have stolen from the russian people. just as we have vulnerabilities in our information domain, we have vulnerabilities in our financial system. i think steps like providing transparency around beneficial ownership, extending and legislating the geographic targeting orders, that the treasury department had been using. there's a whole suite of steps outlined in our report earlier. >> i will read those in the report. i want to hit one last thing and then my time is up. you all mentioned the broader eco system. can you confirm so people understand, this isn't just a couple of platforms, this is
music apps, this is video games, this is meme sharing. it's much broader than twitter and google? >> i would have expect to have people whose job it is to figure out how to exploit every new small platform that comes along. >> thank you all. >> thank you, mr. chairman, i want to-- thank you mr. chairman for calling the important information that you've shared. ... . they don't go in the record. incredibly important because then all of this russia act of measures thing, a lot of space and energy has been going into
campaign and elections and pollution in the sort of things. this is an enormous part of what's going on in worries me that we lost sight of this. the second thing i've learned is number one it's still happening. is that correct? >> absolutely still happening. secondly, more sophisticated than it was in 2016. they are learning to hide their tracks, not pay in repose i thought they would've figured out for. finally come it seems to me what you've been suggesting is we are asymmetrically vulnerable because of the first amendment and democracy. we believe our whole system is based on information and we have this principle of open access ts information. the truth is freedom to combat it. thomas jefferson never met facebook i might add.
would you agree that we are particularly vulnerable because of the natures of our society. this one is for the record. it seems to me there are three ways to combat this in the first is what i hope you would supply for the record. technical solutions, thanks mentioned today that we could do and that facebook could do or google or bread or twitter or whoever. technical solution, those kinds of things. please give us an specificity and things you think we might be able to do. >> i shudder when i hear words regulate the internet, but there may be things we could do that could beeng helpful. you mentioned in your testimony we need to do a better job of media literacy. i had a meeting in the fall of 16 when a groupju of people from
latvia,nd lithuania and estonia. i said what he do about this problem with the russians propaganda and you can unplug the internet you can unplug your tv. they had a very interesting answer. the way it works over here as everybody knows it is happening and therefore when something like this comes online, people say it's just the russians again. we haven't gotten to this point. is that what you mean by improved mediay literacy? >> precisely appear to recognize in instances when they appeared to be able to process those in a way that can minimize the impact. >> that it's deeper than having aeer hearing. our kids are growing up with these devices, but not necessarily being taught how they can be manipulated by their devices. the right to be standardized courses in highh t school called digital literacy and increasing the public's awareness that they are being conned and how to last
those kinds of questions. >> senator i think that's right. it has to include all my literacy as well as standard media literacy but it also can't tjust be in the schools. one of the things we know from research as older populations not growing up with technology may in some cases be more vulnerable to manipulation by v this kind. >> i would argue because they grew up with newspapers and they have an unspoken assumption about editors and fact checkers. if you do your website in times neww roman, people give us some credibility. >> especially if it's your friend sharing it for so many blue to your friend. >> your friend may be sharing something they got from somebody who doesn't do what they got it from. >> final point and you touched on this is deterrence. ultimately, we cannot rely exclusively on defense. the problem thus far seems to me that the russians in this case and others see us as a cheap
date. we are an easy target with no result. nothing happens. that would be something i hope you all again could take for the record because of a lack of time to give us some thoughts about deterrence. it's important it doesn't have to be cyber. it could be deterrence and a number of areas including sanctions as we've discussed. but there has to be some price to be paid otherwise as we now know it's going to continue. so give me some spot on deterrence i appreciate it. >> thank you, senator kaine. senator mentioned. >> i wanted thank you all for coming here today. this is a critical topic which i hope all americans are watching. wilson opened the voting society need to be informed. properly informed voter population is the key to sound democracy. unfortunately, rush is trying to
undermine the foundation. a quick look back as our allies and adversaries have changed over time. the soviet union criticized before world war ii. during our fight against germany, president roosevelt called in the ussr had a mutual enemy. after the end of the war responder cells and adversarial relationships known as the cold war that lasted decades. we saw relations during the 1990s but now russia specifically vladimir putin in the u.s. seem to be adversarial again. mr. howard, your written testimony described everything we've heard today polarizing voters is creating and discouraging citizens to vote. i would ask which country, we know russia, poses the greatest threat to our democracy using social media platforms and which countries are making strides to dodo the same.
>> thank you on the senator. i agree russia has been the most innovative in developing these kinds of techniques. unfortunately, it is safe to say that dictators learn from each other. so as they see successful campaigns in particular countries they t emulate. they think their e own resources in. some of these countries have recast small military units do entirely social media campaigning. as a mentioned earlier, there are now seven different countries who most would agree are actively developing. >> which one has the greatest potential to do harm? >> rush is unquestionably the absolute greatest violator. china has the next best capacity >> inhabits the night yet? >> not directly in the u.s.
here. >> is there any country successful deterring russia or any other attackers from other countries? >> not that i'm aware of. is hard to know the counterfactual of what would've happened inn different cases in some of these instances. there is some evidence that in the german and french election that deterrent messaging from the top cover from the leadership there about the consequences of this activity may have reduced in some ways. >> how about the election in france? we saw that he fought back in the attacks being made by a brush. >> there're interesting lessons we may be able to learn. >> i'm so sorry. our time is very limited. >> i answered to quickly before. the macron case is a perfect example of how being aware of it, situational awareness as well as quick and decisive counter it in terms of
public speech by the leadership had no effect. >> one final question here. in west virginia, we have a hard time deciding where to get the facts.ms fake news seems to be the real news depending where they get it from.. social media and sometimes on networks if you will. can i ask each one of you all were you receive your new that you believe is factual. where can i help west virginia andou find some real news and nt have to rely on trying to decide for themselves pillars of fake or, made up, real or not. i will start and go right down. >> pbs, bbc in canadian broadcasting company. >> i'm old-fashioned and i still like newspapers as my majorpe sources. i like having publishers involved in editors were able to fact check content.
>> i'm a new yorker and i'll go with the old gray lady. >> "new york times" >> "new york times" and the "washington post" and "the wall streetet journal." >> major newspapers. >> not. >> not one of you mentioned socialal media. not one of you mentioned what we are talking about for you teacher mr. trester news to come from. i think that speaks volumes of opera dealing withpe today. i have no further questions after that. thank you very much. >> thank you, senator mentioned. i might add to his comments about what happened in france. france also did some things that constitutionally we can do. let's recognize the fact that they had a very loud message and a very big stick it a used and we might not get the same result but that doesn't change the loud voice. senator rubio. >> thank you. no one mentioned tmc. there's some good stuff ons tm.
i'm on as often as i can get on the air anyway, i want to talk about the terminology that we used because one of the things that is impeding the way forward and get your insight on all of this. i've had people come up to me and say we spy on everyone, but this is not about espionage. there may be elements that involve espionage. hacking the computer, getting into a system network and stealing e-mails and the like. this is not an espionage situation. the other term that is thrown around as collusion in an ongoing efforts to answer all those questions. this sort of thing doesn't really require collusion. you don't need cooperation of a political party or candidate to do any of this. many of the gospel done yesterday have nothing to do with the candidate or party in the short-term and isn't even quite clear what the psychologists behind it other than get us to fight against each other.
if people put aside what espionage focus on the collusion focus and let that be dealt with the way it's beingea dealt with. regardless of the term interference and that's a generic term that it almost sounds benign. interference sounds like everything from the leadership of another country preference who won the election to actively engage in hoping someone could elect did. i would hope that maybeyb you disagree this is more than not. this is nothing less than informational warfare. it's just another type of warfare and that is how vladimir putin views the united states of america. so for o example if we connected they cannot extract from a military strike to take out anti-air defenses he would do so to weaken our air defenses and if they connect a cyberattack to knock out our command and control they will weaken our communication systems, our grid.ical and if you do this, you do it in
order to weaken our society, willingness and capacity to fight them over together and come together as a nation. this is part of our broader dock during on how to confront an adversary and on the escalation scale across very little money. you can do it omitted attribution and it works because the fact of the matter is with all the things happening in the world today, the united states senate has spent an inordinate amount of time on this important topic in there so many other issues that can be focused on. so it's worked to some extent. is this assessment of the right? this is not interference. this iss information warfare designed for division and conflict in dallas because whether it involves changing voter registration database in the future at some point potentially are the stuff we are seeing now, all of that is designed to basically get us to fight against each other. we already fight against each other in this country.
all this does is stir that up even more. this informational warfare? >> that is 100%. >> to the extent that it is, but wouldn't one of the best things that could have been as we can focus all day on facebook and twitter and instagram. these aree ultimately platforms being used for informational warfare. i nobly they invited them in and there's thingsed they can do to improve processes and i wish disclosures were faster. by and large it would be like blaming the road builders because enemies use the wrist that takes into their country. they were things these folks can be doing to improve the way they operate. ultimately we should focus on what's being done and not only that they're using to do it. my question is why wouldn't the social media pages he in a position to potentially alert all of their users is not just a
public disclosure like yesterday the press conference, but actively send out every time they remove something so that people can become conditioned for this sort of messages being driven by these informational warfare operation. >> i believe they can. abu senator blumenthal requested they do so in response to the hearings. saying they had seen and engaged in twitter sent out e-mails for users were in fact did. one thing that it does since it comes fromec a platform seen as somewhat somewhat trustworthy or hear it from the media with his polarized secret chambers were people don't even believe this is happening. >> senator, i would add that one of the things we know from the history back of measures as those across eastern europe and central europe is that sunlight is one of the most transparency
exposure to the critical for building resiliency and deterring it going forward. i absolutely concur that the more information on more transparency of the platforms can be provided to their consumers to the users of information is absolutely critical.ti >> it is great to face with us this out there and we are having this hearing. the vast majority of people i know back home will never seeeea single one of these images because there's a lot going on constantly by the hour. >> senators. >> thank you tiered >> mr. chairman, i would like to put which i believe is the context in which it happenedho n 2016. first, we are all clear that russia attacked our country during the 2016 election and that they are continuing to attack us today. russia not only attacked one of our most sacred democratic values, which is a free and fair election, but also i believe are very american identity.
i often say that we as americans to matter race, religion or region have so much more in common than what separates us. among what we have in common is a love of country and and a belief that we ass americans should solely be responsible for the choosing of our elected leaders in the shade of our democracy and who will be the president of the united states. i think os x has been a large and diverse family, the american family and like any family we have issues in shares that are legitimate and run deep and provoke potent reactions. we have a history of slavery in this country. we have a history of jim crow, of lynching, segregation and discrimination. and indeed, we have a lot to do to repair and to recover from the harm of the past and from harm that continues today.
let's be clear. someone else came into our house in the house of this country come in the family of who we are as americans and they manipulated us and they are an adversary and they provoked us and they tried to turn us against each other. the russian government came into the house of the american family is in manipulated us and we must take threats must take threats seriously and has contacts and understand that when we debate as he did in 2016, one of the most important debates that we have, which is who will be the leader of our country, the russian six bladed our nation's discourse to plan for a deepest fear. and as leaders, i believe it is incumbentr upon us to speak to the american people about how we can solve this urgent national securityen threat.
first we must act urgently to bolster our country's defenses like our election infrastructure ands cybersecurity. a bipartisan issue that we have been working on in a bipartisan way. senator langford and many of our colleagues throughout the work we've been doing on secure elections act. the second, i believe we need to make sure that the american public recognizes who is trying to sow hate and division among usre so that the american public can rightly identify and see it for what it is an attempt to exploit our vulnerability is for the purpose of weakening our country. withnt that, in your written testimony can you say the russian internet agency irna efforts targeting the right leaning and left-leaning was unified in its negativity towards the candidacy of secretary clinton. and that in pages targeting
content intended to depress voter turnout among voters. this seems to cooperate the intelligence community finding that russia was trying to hurt the campaign and helped the other. can you tell us more about what your research has found regardingen the nature of the political content that the russian ira was pushing toward americans on a social media durg the 2016 campaign. >> it was not unified in being pro-president trump. the pages targeting the lefthe were still anti-candidate at the time term. on the right we did see an evolution in which evidence of support for candidate trump continued during the primaries. there were some anti-senator rubio, senator cruz content that
appeared. and there is a substantial amount of anti-secretary clinton content, both the right and the left that included narratives that either african-americans should not vote, should both her joel stein so it's not a wasted vote entering the primary there is supporter for candidate sanders. >> quickly, ms. rosenberger, and you published a report for the authoritarian interference in democracies. he described an event on may 21st of 2016 were two groups were protesting in houston, texas and one was called the heart of texas that opposed the islamic vacation of texas. on the other side, the united muslims of america where rowling to say that sonic knowledge and these protests were confrontational. can you tell mel. at the time, were long for center protesters aware of who it manufactured the
conflict? >> know, our understanding is they were not. fortunately, one for that was present at the demonstration and therefore was able to keep w thm separate. one of the things they believe may have been part of the intent of organizing simultaneous rallies, same days, same place opposite sides of the streets was to attempt to provoke violence. >> as we can follow-up in any riding with the committee, and i'd be interested in knowing your recommendations for how we can inform on force meant because obviously this is a matter about public safety and officer safety. many of these disruptions resulting in violence and harm to many constituents. >> i point quickly to the announcement from facebook yesterday which seems that it may have been something intended to be along similar lines with a protest attempting a very high emotions. langford.
>> would you go to expose some of the issues. thank you. a lot of hours at a computer and running a lot of data that we appreciate that very much. i want to ask you about some recommendations your team has made in a follow-up on one of the questions senator blunt had started. he made them very specific recommendations that when we discover attribution which is not easy to do but as a foreign actor three means that a response using to recommend sanctions. making sure reputational cost for the country doing it and considering offensive cyberoperations. take those in reverse order. what would you consider offensive cyberoperation that would be effect is? >> senator as you know it is itself a very o complex problemo just boil it down to be specific within this context. what i i would say is i think there are instances in which when we are able -- when the
u.s. government is able to i., for instance, the servers that are being used to carry out these operations, based on variety of potential damage assessments, iraq, i do think sethat there are instances in which that might be an appropriate course of action. as we know this can often lead to a challenge of laughable. you set up a new server, better. of course one of the things we know that creates challenges for sometimes to the trans-national operations they may be using the server of the united states or the country are in the domain of one of our allies. that introduces complication. i do think there are instances in which we should consider it. >> you also mentioned cause. russia does propaganda on their own people and against everyone else.
whatep kind of reputational cost commuter train to expose their activities? >> it is a little bit more specifically aimed at china where i think that as others have alluded to have the capabilities and receiving testing things in our neighborhood. china has a longer-term strategic interest that is much more about generating its model. i think the reputational cost will be more effective at china. i concur when it comes to russia from the reputational costs are difficult although i do believe it's important for the american people to hear clear and consistent messages from our leadership. vladimir putin or an adversaryt threat to a nation. >> is pleased to facebook's announcement that it's one thing to be able to say they are being used by an adversary in another. as an outside entity. here's the image is they are putting out and they put out a
tremendous amount off data thats much improved from where we were two years ago when they were still saying we are not sure if not sure if he used us or didn't use us and now they're being very forward thinking i'm not. that is helpful to get informationo faster. traditional media multiply that by putting it out as well that helps us build to get the message out. one of the things we heard on this committee multiple times in those attacks that they been able to have that. one of the questions to relate to this as well. one of yourr recommendations on making sure there's transparency. legislation ensures americans onknow the source of political ads. much of what happened with this was not bad. it was a profile set up that they did a tremendous amount to develop it. how do you separate out even aware or an ad is in just a profile that is a free j profile developed quite a following. >> i completely concur the
advertising piece of the offer was a small one. my own view from a national security perspective is readily identifiable durability we should close it off. even if it's not the most specific avenue, i believe applying the same standards to political advertising online and offline is absolutely essential. that being said, that would not solvee the problem and we can't be in any way convinced that it will. we also recommend a number of transparency measures about providing greater context for users about the origin of information, whether automation is involved, about requiring some kind of authenticity will protect the anonymity. these are the kinds of steps that can t help mitigate some of these broader concerns are raising. >> i look forward to the conversation. is there a level of cooperation needed between the internet service providers, cell phone companies and others that have a different level of information about where it's's coming from d
their cooperation with some providers of content. right now we're leaning to say help is at the data can help police yourself on it, but there's another level of information from the cell phone companies and such is well aware that data has originated from. >> when you combine that withed information the intelligence community can provide, that is how we put together different pieces of the puzzle to create better identification processes. >> look forward to that. thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, mr. chairman. and thank you for your excellent testimony. we all appreciate what facebook did yesterday. i think it was a very appropriate type of response. there's a comment that you made, dr. howard that is very important in bears repeating that the companies are beyond regulation. could you elaborate on my
>> much of what we've discussed today has come from evident that has been released very slowly over a two-year period often after prodding from you multiple times this committee investigations when the social media industries and self-regulation the faster we can catch. the impact of our democracy. they based charities, civic groups, hospitals and universities also under attack. these are also the organization that i think can help defend us. >> that i think again, we have gotten the chairman and the vice chairman have done a remarkable
job. slowly and surely we've gotten a little bit more response. but time is running out frankly and i think we have to move legislatively to set in motion a framework of disclosure. someone mentioned options to reduce information or informed the participants. i don't think that will happen voluntarily. they would all love to do it, but unless everyone does it, it is not a were not culturally consistent with their. >> down the line on the comment about do we have to move quickly to set up a framework consistent with the first amendment obviously thatst allows us to dl with this issue. >> senator, one thing i would note that saw the united states has not t taken steps like this, other countries or international
institutions have veered the european union has been moving out other conversations about regulation of social media and online platforms. china is using market access of enormous leverage by being absent from this conversation and not taking some of these thorny issues. right now what is happening as other countries and governments are settinggo the rules for this space and that is in many cases the ideas senator warner are absolutely worse conversations in the kinds of things we need to be doing. >> one of the ironies you point out is that can reduce advantage because not only don't we get to make the rules, but our companies will follow the rules in china, followed the rules in europe and not follow the rules
here, leaving us vulnerable. >> i believe it is critical to have access or data to all the platforms in orderhe to detect this kind of the committee and that is a sophisticated capability a that needs to be created in a lot of time and effort from people. where doest the data fit and i think our concerns about privacy in the first amendment lead us to obey suggests we have to think about industry oriented consortiums are things that allow without moving it to far from t industry have the first crack. >> again, i think your instincts are very consistent with the views of most americans. this now has been several years and we are waiting for the robust response.
and it's a good sign the industry is coming around. >> to proactive transparency we saw yesterday shows her leadership in the field and i think we need more about. >> we do. my concern is again their other incentives, disincentives that could inhibit die. >> i think the key is to have oversight. we spoke aboutpo finance earlie. there were two sets of regulators. self of regulators. self-regulatory bodies that stepped in. thee exchanges, parallels able o see what's happening before the regulatory process is not on our platform. that's an interesting model, the exchanges acting independently and oversight body looking to make sure. >> on to say or research
certainly shows in the importance of tackiness t information so that audiences could know the source of it. the appropriate legislation. >> thank you. >> senator cornyn. i can't help but recall the words that set for every complex problem there is a solution that is clear, simple and wrong. we should demonstrate humility when we approach this from a public policy to what our response should be. i also want to ask you about my impression, which is a would be a mistake to think this is just about elections. one of the reasons i say that i came across an article or recently entitled when a stranger decides to destroy your life where somebody used a fabricated story aboutbo a woman
in posted it online on a website called she's a homewrecker and basically ruined this woman's life or at least challenged it in a dramatic way. and then i thought well, this is a tool that could also be used by somebody who wants to tank a stock price by disparaging the reputation of a company and then perhaps sell it short and reap significant rewards. or if you're a chinese telecom to wants to get rid of the competition when it comes to developing 5g technology or some other cutting-edge technology, this is a useful tool using this information warfare. all of this leads me to wonder if by focusing solely on the election, which is dramatic and
of tremendous concern and i share d the good turns of all of you in the committee that if we just focus on math and not the rest of the picture whether we are missing the right picture. ms. diresta, given thehe observations? >> we do look at misinformation and disinformation targeting viements of campaigns, targeting agriculture and energy has to industries of foreign powers. we've seen countries affiliated with strong oil interests in agriculture that's taking the form of spreading fear about gm owes. >> ms. rosenberger. >> in the case of russia we know to use this operation to shape her conversations and views on geopolitical issues, especially those with interest oral russia. one ira sponsored act as and how
would we feel if another country on dust or police brutality that was posted in the immediate aftermath of the current administration strikes on syria after the chemical attack inn march 2017. so the accounts actually criticizingtr inaction by the current administration using emotional issues like water crisis and police brutality as an avenue to try to shape is on a geopolitical issue. >> i completely agree there's a commercial commercial dimension of this which is underreported in the lap are going on the commercial space in these attacks than those reported. when they discuss some of them, we've seen other customers and sometimes they are tied these political attacks veryor basicay punish the falsely amplified boycott campaigns and similar
measures for doing something which is politically now for russia would like to see. >> dr. helmus, psychologists jonathan he gave a speech i've seen recently called the age of outrage at the manhattan institute where he basically describes a narrative where there a lot of things conspiring to manipulate us and invoke outrage or whatever is going on, whether it's cable news, social media or the like. what can regular americans do to protect themselves against those whether they be stateho act hei, whether they be individuals, with malicious intent, what can they do to protect themselves? there is one thing for the government to do what we can do from a policy standpoint, but what can average individuals,
consumers do to protect themselves fromotec being manipulated by fake information or misinformation. >> you know, our work in eastern europe and as was mentioned earlier, suggests that people in thoseeo areas are very well awae of russia's intentions, and works very closely to those nations and people know what is goingt' on. obviously the way to find united states is understanding the need to know the sources of your information and be able tof adjudicateo and assess the truthfulness of that information commend the essential biases of the information and make her own decisions on that. ultimately it's about being being a careful consumer of information. >> thank you. thank you, senator cornyn. the chair will recognize and see if we've got any members to
return after the second dose start. will try to wrap up as close as can. i have heard a lot of phrases to describe what went on just in the last few minutes. disinformation campaign, misinformation campaign. i think he used one that struck me earlier. confrontational propaganda. my suggestion is that we not come up with a single one because we are dealing with a generational issue and i think somebody alluded to it earlier that it is much easier to take a generation that grew up with these devices and accomplish some type of change than it is for somebody that struggled like me to learn how to usese the device and found the most useful tv ad when somebody befriended somebody and took the picture off the p wall. if you remember the post-it
note, that struck home to me. so i think it is important that we speak to the many languages en masse because the task that we've got before us is to penetrate the entire population and it's not limited to the united states. as you have described the data, i h hope that there's a take awy for the media. it's going on everywhere. it's not limited to politics. it is much more intrusive than economic, global economic picture today than it is in the politicalt landscape. so i want to point you to this chart i've got over here. it looks like something that would be used at the psychiatrist's office to help you describe what it was. in our analysis we went through and try to connect the dot. who generates, where does it go. does it go to the right, does it go to the left. but my staff determined and i'm
looking for your agreement or disagreement is that in a lot of cases, the same person sitting somewhere in the world initiating this propaganda. both initiated on the right and the left. and it was in two different individuals, therefore this is a very well orchestrated, well choreographed plan that they carried out. what is your comment on that? >> this is interesting in itself a deeper story that you don't just have one room full of people who are running girls and the others running left-wing trolls. it's the same people at the same computers. that is a real lesson in how we need to worry about the way they are trying to play us like marionette, right and left. >> is it safe to say that it is so easy at their t pressure uses
existing views inside of american society? all they do is try to make the gap taker between the two. >> they are not creating these divisions in europe and elsewhere. they find what are the vulnerabilities in the groups that oppose each other under arminge them. before you go. >> is this any different than what we faced in the 1960s in the campaigns by the soviet union against their adversaries? >> it is and it isn't. the playbook in some way is the same, but the tools that they can use to run those are very different. what we have seen is digital path arms have supercharged the ability to take that playbook and to really reach a much
broader audience more quickly and in a much more targeted kind of way than what we would've seen in the 1960s. there's a difference between hand cranking out leaflets in the basement and passing them around as covert means than there is from putting information online, using automatedd techniques, inauthentic personas to go viral. >> i will say the vice-chairman has been one of the most outspoken about how technology allows this plan to be on steroids. words like bots and he comes up with some new ones every day. many on the committee and most inos the country didn't understd or still don't understand. i am not sure that we can emphasize enough the intent but more importantly the capability and deserve a tremendous amount of credit for raising this to the level it is.
thank you, mr. chairman. that's the nicest thing you said about me. [laughter] >> i can repair the record. >> i want to start with what senator cornyn said. i think the political piece is really going to be relatively small compared to the overall threat. one of the things we have not yet talked about today is the mary of cyberattacks with misinformation, disinformation. if somebody goes out, say for example that equifax is done by at foreign actor and as personal information on 146 million americans. then, that there contacts you with your personal financial information and open that message and behind that message comes a live stream video of what appears to be mark zuckerberg for jay powell, the
chairman of the federal reserve and the ability to wreak havoc in the market. it almost overwhelms what we see on the politicalve front. this is one that is important. i appreciate when we were talking earlier unrecognized you really help me recently that even something that seems so obvious i should the right to know whether we are being contacted by human beings has layers of complexity to it. we have to continue to explore that. ms. rosenberger, two points i wantts to make. one is that you have rightfully said we want to make sure that we protect anonymity particularly in egypt -- and to hide sourcing gets easier and easier, even with those
challenges. shouldld we have some ability to say should americans have some ability to put some kind of geocoding location so that if somebody says they are postingoa message from michigan or north carolina and its originating and macedonia are russia come are russia can elect elites have that o impression. we don't have to get the content, but they're about to be a second look because the origin of the post may not be what is described in the posts. is that a tool? >> i think there are ways. that is one thing that can be investigated. there are a variety of ways to require authenticity without requiring disclosure. so i platform, in fact, some of them do require confirmation of authenticity. some of them include a verified check that sort of put another level of authenticity on top of
that. there are ways that authenticity can be confirmed or at least we can do a lot better to try to confirm it while still ensuring you have anonymity protected. >> let me follow up. we have heard today some members talk about section 230. some members talk about the whole privacy. i have raised some issues about humans versus bob. talking here about geocoding. one of the areas we haven't talked so much about and i appreciate the chairman giving me this extrate time. but are their market forces that could help if we ensure more competition. for example, it used to be really hard to work for one telco u to another until the implement requirements of
affordability. the facebook, google is, traders, there may be increasing concerns about the safety of their data, ownership of the data from the fake accounts being used. let me state that upfront. the notion of data affordability and that would say if you want to take all of your content off of facebook, they have to make it in a user-friendly form to move to new code because that's part of their business model is going to have much higher levels of authentication. is that a possible avenue to look at as well? i'll take anybody on the panel. you've also got to get into an operability's which is not a perfect analogy. is there enough of an idea there?
anybody? >> i don't have an answer on that exactly, but as you're thinking about that, it is important to think of these disinformation campaigns, two of the most powerful things are a combination of anonymity and ottoman station. those two things together allow you to run very large armies so to speak. they are able to affect your object is. those two pieces are something you have toav think about that concern. the other thing about that if they are only part of the army sohi to speak. by solving that problem, even if you force them to identify, you force them to put a flashing light on our chairs. there's a lot of other folks out there that are playing more direct roles do you still have to worry about in the more high-value assets in the cybersocial bottle or a little bit harderrere to find and theye
the ones you can't just fire another 100 of them. >> we have a lot of recognition, faced with today and twitter which in the last two months even counter to their business model has taken down but the fake accounts. is there any possibility here about trying to add more competition into the marketplace as a way to help us sort through this? not so much a regulatory approach, but a competitive approach. >> one of the challenges if you fragment where people are, they're more platforms to watch and it does get to everything. not to say that is not an appropriate course of action because the reasons it is so it is this mass consolidation of audiences as the internet which was originally more decentralized and a very small handful of platforms. the challenge is also people
like thate consolidation. they like having all their friends on one platform. it's kind of a chicken and egg platform, but happy to continue the conversation. >> if anybody wants to add, my last comment with the i think one of the earlier statement that were made with each of these platforms, even as large as they are, really only look after their own content. so that ability to see across the vote ecosystem is mostly lacking. the chairman and i have spent a lot of time to learn up on this come if you like the u.s. government is trying to get a handle on that, but a lot of work to do as well. so i really want to thank all of you and one of the things, is there more ability for us to
urge, forthcoming match the platforms in an anonymous way to share more data with independent researchers because you guys actually can get best that systemwide view that facebook can't give us the complete picture. >> senator, i think that is exactly right. we need two different kinds of information sharing and ideally they can come somehow combine. greater data sharing between the public sector and the private sector bringing together the capabilities of the intelligence community with the capabilities and the platforms they see happening in their own ecosystem with privacy each protected, but there are mechanisms to do that. but that. to its cross-platform information sharing. i would think about this ins a vertical and horizontal challenge and then you have outside researchers which is absolutely critical. renée mentioned earlier that
counterterrorism is one model to look at. there's other models including the financialnd integrity worlds well as the cybersecurity world where you've been able to bring together industry, and academics to ensure the full picture is put together. >> i want to thank all of you, particularly the chairman. he did this beyond a post-it note also the refrigerator. the ally has been this committee forward. this is the democratic or republican answer since clearly the whole of our adversaries is not one over the other. it is to recount a conflict of visions and they are trying to take thisth on. >> i thank the chairman.
we started this drumbeat over a year ago. a lot of changesye have happened for 12 months ago with some of the companies we would do. it is not turned aroundo overnight. i think they have now given opportunity to work with them and i hope in a month we have three of then platforms in that we will see a willingness to collaborate with us to come up withwi a solution that has legislatively and from the standpoint of their corporatef responsibilitieson. i am optimistic that we are started on that pathway to a solution. i remind people that it was this committee that took on legislation for cybersecurity when everybody said it couldn't happen. it's a perfect? no. was it a good first step? yes. part of the challenge because we
are the future for technology changes in the world. there is no committee for technology and it all sort of dumps in our lap and we have a perspective that nobody else has. technology will drive for the next 10 years the way we do things, to where we communicate. everything will be driven by technological change. we will be talking about a new architecture. not necessarily new architecture for social media, before the relationshipre between governmet and the terror and i hope that if there is the take away from today's hearing, it is that this is the last time we will associate the propaganda effort that we see with an election cycle. there has been no interruption since 16. there is no interruption since
fort team. this was planned out well before we knew that the two candidates were, the differences between the two parties wherever the american peoples hot button less. it's flexible enough in simple enough that whatever the hot button is they want to initiate. i can't thank all of you enough for your candid and insightful testimony. you've given us a lot to think about as we wrestle with how to counteract the problems of foreign influence in its views on social media. i want to summarize what weso he heard today from the american people. the russians conducted a structured influence campaign using u.s.-based social media platforms and others to target the american people using divisive issues such as race, immigration and sexual orientation. that campaign is still active today. they didn't do it because they have political leanings to the right or to the left, but because they care about our
elections, t but rather becausea weak america is good for russia. some feel that we as a society are sitting in a burning room calmly drinking a cup of coffee telling ourselves this is fine. that is not fine and that is not the case. we should no longer be talking about the russians attempted to interfere with society. they been doing it since the days of the soviet union and they are still doing it today. the perfect question now is what are we going to do about it? it won't be an easy answer. the problem requires all of us, government, private air, civil society, the public to come together to leverage our resources to develop a multipronged strategy to counteract foreign attacks. we've heard about the problem today and considered some solutions. the leaders in social media
comments and they earned a fair amount today while watching the theory to look forward to their responses. they owe it to the american people to communicate clearly and transparently what they view their role to be and what they are doing to combat these foreign influence operations. this issue goes farr beyond election. we are fighting for the integrity of our society and we need to enlist every person we can. with that, i want to thank you for your time today. i hit within a minute of what this target was going to be. this hearing is adjourned. [inaudible conversations]
. from 2011 to 2012 and former assistant who argued 29 cases before justice kennedy and the court. watch the legacy of supreme court justice anthony kennedy tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, c-span.org or listen on the free c-span radio app. at the recent annual aftion former, senator bob casey talked about his desire for congress to take further action to make sure cockpit doors are secure and for sexual harassment on commercial airliners. this is 25 minutes.