Reading a new report on Russian online interference in the 2016 Presidential election is a cognitively disturbing experience. The report, prepared by the cybersecurity company New Knowledge, was the more detailed of two commissioned by the Senate Intelligence Committee and released on Monday—it is illustrated with screenshots of memes apparently used as part of the Russian campaign of disinformation. The text of the report describes a sophisticated, wide-ranging, sustained, strategic operation by the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, one that played out on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and elsewhere: “The Internet Research Agency exploited divisions in our society by leveraging vulnerabilities in our information ecosystem. They exploited social unrest and human cognitive biases.” But the illustrations accompanying the New Knowledge report seem transposed from a wholly different narrative.Full Article: Why the Russian Influence Campaign Remains So Hard to Understand | The New Yorker.
Dec 19 2018