Wavelength Weekly

— a weekly collection of reporting and research on disinformation —

Misinformation 2020: What the Data Tells Us About Election-Related Falsehoods

Here are urgent lessons from the year’s most-spread false themes — and the ones going viral right now.

By Peter W. Singer
Nov. 5, 2020

On Nov. 3, the #stopthesteal false narrative took just minutes to spike and start to spread. (ZIGNAL LABS)

We can’t fully understand the 2020 election and its current aftermath without understanding how misinformation flowed — and continues to flow — through the body politic. So what does the hard data tell us about the online information warfare that targeted American voters?

U.S. Tried a More Aggressive Cyberstrategy, and the Feared Attacks Never Came

The 2020 election was the biggest test yet of a new approach of pre-emptive action against adversaries trying to hack election infrastructure or wage disinformation campaigns.

By David E. Sanger and Julian E. Barnes
Nov. 9, 2020

The United States is beginning to figure out how to deter cyberattacks on its elections, Democrats and Republicans said after the 2020 campaign. (Andrew Seng for The New York Times)

From its sprawling new war room inside Fort Meade, not far from Baltimore-Washington International Airport in Maryland, United States Cyber Command dived deep into Russian and Iranian networks in the months before the election, temporarily paralyzing some and knocking ransomware tools offline . . . .