Spotlight

Latest Research

DFRLab Nonresident Fellow Konstantinos Komaitis speaking at an event.
March 2024

Second Statement of Konstantinos Komaitis to the United Nations on the Global Digital Compact

by Konstantinos Komaitis

Delivered before the United Nations on the topic of the Global Digital Compact, identifying opportunities it presents
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DFRLab Nonresident Fellow Konstantinos Komaitis speaking at an event.
February 2024

First Statement of Konstantinos Komaitis to the United Nations on the Global Digital Compact

by Konstantinos Komaitis

Delivered before the United Nations on the topic of the Global Digital Compact, addressing successes and lessons learned
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February 2024

The 5×5—Alumni perspectives on Cyber 9/12 Strategy Challenge

by Nitansha Bansal, Isabella Wright

Alumni of Cyber 9/12 Strategy Challenge share their experiences, and discuss the impact of such simulated exercises to prepare for real life cyber attacks.
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A man holds a Russian flag an orange and black "Z" symbol during the annual Immortal Regiment march in Moscow on Victory Day, May 9, 2022. The websites investigated in this report used the same version of the Z symbol in their online promotional materials. (Source: STR/NurPhoto via Reuters Connect)
February 2024

Pro-Russia network spreads propaganda and disinfo in Latin America

by Beatriz Farrugia

Multi-platform operation amplifying Kremlin-aligned narratives published content in Portuguese and Spanish
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February 2024

Arms sale claim heightened tensions ahead of 2023 Armenia-Azerbaijan peace talks

by Ani Mejlumyan, Valentin Châtelet

Online narratives claimed Iran or Russia might exploit French weapons that were allegedly bound for Armenia
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February 2024

French prime minister faces onslaught of online attacks

by Valentin Châtelet

Investment scam promoted via Meta Ads, AI-fueled smear campaigns on X, and a Russian-led disinformation operation, and ignite a social media frenzy around Gabriel Attal
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February 2024

US celebrities unwittingly recruited to undermine Moldova’s president

by Victoria Olari

Pro-Russian propagandists solicited US celebrities on Cameo to record videos calling for the downfall of Moldovan President Maia Sandu
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An image of a GPU overlaid with a computer terminal showing the results of an nmap command, a network scan.
February 2024

Hacking with AI

by Maia Hamin, Stewart Scott

Can generative AI help hackers? By deconstructing the question into attack phases and actor profiles, this report analyzes the risks, the realities, and their implications for policy.
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Smartphone with the app from TikTok on the flags of the USA and China. (Source: Reuters)
February 2024

TikTok: Hate the Game, Not the Player

by Rose Jackson, Seth Stodder, Kenton Thibaut

How Strategic and Regulatory Confusion Around TikTok Prevent an Effective National Security Response
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In-Depth Reports

Scaling Trust on the Web

February 2023

Narrative Warfare

February 2023

Undermining Ukraine

An image of a GPU overlaid with a computer terminal showing the results of an nmap command, a network scan.
February 2024

Hacking with AI

by Maia Hamin, Stewart Scott

Can generative AI help hackers? By deconstructing the question into attack phases and actor profiles, this report analyzes the risks, the realities, and their implications for policy.
Read More
Smartphone with the app from TikTok on the flags of the USA and China. (Source: Reuters)
February 2024

TikTok: Hate the Game, Not the Player

by Rose Jackson, Seth Stodder, Kenton Thibaut

How Strategic and Regulatory Confusion Around TikTok Prevent an Effective National Security Response
Read More
January 2024

Design Questions in the Software Liability Debate

by Maia Hamin, Sara Ann Brackett, and Trey Herr, with Andy Kotz

Software liability—resurgent in the policy debate since its mention in the 2023 US National Cybersecurity Strategy—describes varied potential structures to create legal accountability for vendors of insecure software. This report identifies key design questions for such regimes and tracks their discussion through the decades-long history of the debate.
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November 2023

This Job Post Will Get You Kidnapped: A Deadly Cycle of Crime, Cyberscams, and Civil War in Myanmar

by Emily Ferguson and Emma Schroeder

In Myanmar, cybercrime has become an effective vehicle through which nonstate actors can fund and perpetuate conflict.
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Telephone with messaging apps. “Protecting point-to-point messaging apps: Understanding Telegram, WeChat, and WhatsApp in the United States” cover image.
August 2023

Protecting point-to-point messaging apps: Understanding Telegram, WeChat, and WhatsApp in the United States

by Iria Puyosa

A year-long project on protecting users’ data and privacy that analyzes the growing use of point-to-point messaging platforms in the United States and the implications their design and governing policies have for user privacy and free speech.
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Democracy Derailed report cover art
August 2023

Sudan’s precarious information environment and the fight for democracy

by Tessa Knight, Lujain Alsedeg

An examination of the time from December 2018, when protests against then-president Omar al-Bashir first broke out, and December 2022, when a framework agreement between civilian and military leaders came into play.
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A World Map Of China 3D Rendering - Chinese Discourse Power Cover graphic
August 2023

Chinese discourse power: Capabilities and impact

by Kenton Thibaut

An examination of China’s online and offline channels for the dissemination of “discourse power” and the mechanisms of oversight on which such communications rely.
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July 2023

Critical Infrastructure and the Cloud: Policy for Emerging Risk

by Tianjiu Zuo, Justin Sherman, Maia Hamin, and Stewart Scott

Critical infrastructure increasingly depends upon cloud computing. Policy must adapt its approach to risk management accordingly.
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June 2023

The disinformation landscape in West Africa and beyond

by Tessa Knight, Jean le Roux

A look at West Africa’s information environment, with particular emphasis on local and international disinformation campaigns targeting the region and beyond.
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Projects

Russian soldier and helicopter

Russian War Report

As Russia’s aggression in Europe heats up, the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab) is keeping a close eye on Moscow’s movements across the military, cyber, and information domains.

Foreign Interference Attribution Tracker

The DFRLab’s Foreign Interference Attribution Tracker (FIAT) is an interactive, open-source database that captures allegations of foreign interference relevant to the 2020 election. This tool assesses the credibility, bias, evidence, transparency, and impact of each claim.


Election Official Handbook: Preparing for Election Day Misinformation

As part of the Election Integrity Partnership, the DFRLab has analyzed roughly four hundred cases of election-related dis- and misinformation on social media. This memo gathers the findings and issues recommendations for US election officials: they must prepare for viral falsehoods online that persist for weeks.


Dichotomies of Disinformation

Via the DFRLab’s Github: This project isolates “political disinformation campaigns.” Dichotomies of Disinformation proposes and tests a classification system built on 150 variable options. Our intent is to establish a replicable, extensible system by which widely disparate disinformation campaigns can be categorized and compared.

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