Friday, July 19, 2024

US Department of Justice announces disruption of Russian social media influence operation, impacting Technology industry

DOJ Disrupts Russian-Government-Backed AI Propaganda Campaign

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) has made a significant breakthrough in disrupting a Russian-government-backed propaganda campaign using artificial intelligence to spread disinformation. The operation, which aimed to covertly promote pro-Kremlin messages in the US and abroad, was uncovered just months before the upcoming US presidential election.

According to reports, the DOJ obtained court approval to seize two domain names and investigate nearly 1,000 social media accounts linked to the AI-enhanced bot farm responsible for the campaign. Attorney General Merrick Garland stated, “With these actions, the Justice Department has disrupted a Russian-government-backed, AI-enabled propaganda campaign to use a bot farm to spread disinformation in the United States and abroad.”

This marks the first time the US has publicly accused a foreign government of utilizing generative AI in a foreign influence operation. Officials have raised concerns about the potential misuse of AI to amplify efforts to spread misinformation and disrupt democratic processes.

The alleged operation, spearheaded by a private intelligence organisation in Russia with ties to Russian intelligence officers and a senior employee of Russia Today (RT), was reportedly funded and approved by the Kremlin. The organisation used a custom AI-powered platform to create fake social media accounts that appeared to belong to real Americans, posting pro-Kremlin content, including videos of Russian President Vladimir Putin and criticism of the Ukrainian government.

The DOJ worked in collaboration with Dutch authorities to investigate the campaign, which was operated from a server in the Netherlands. While spokespeople for the Russian embassy in Washington and RT have not responded to requests for comment, this disruption serves as a significant step in combating foreign interference and disinformation campaigns.

Related Articles

Latest Articles

Most Popular