Tomorrow, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence is conducting a hearing on “Foreign Influence Operations’ Use of Social Media Platforms.”
Google is committed to working with Congress on these issues. In addition to providing private briefings, as our senior executive responsible for these issues, I will be in Washington briefing Members of Congress on our work on this and other issues and answering any questions they have, and will be submitting this testimony.
We believe that we have a responsibility to prevent the misuse of our platforms and we take that very seriously. Our efforts in this area started many years before the 2016 election. We work to detect and minimize opportunities for manipulation and abuse, constantly tackling new threats and bad actors that arise. Google was founded with a mission to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful; the abuse of the tools and platforms we build is antithetical to that mission.
While the nature of our services and the way we run our advertising operations appears to have limited the amount of state-sponsored interference on our platforms, no system is perfect—and we are committed to taking continuing action to address the issue. Over the course of the last 18 months, we have:
Continued to work to identify and remove actors from our products who mislead others regarding their identity, including the Internet Research Agency and other Russian- and Iranian-affiliated entities. I recently provided an updated summary of the results of our work in this area.
Invested in a number of initiatives to improve cybersecurity protections for candidates, campaigns, and election infrastructure—such as our Advanced Protection Program, Project Shield and state-sponsored attack warnings.
Met with dozens of Members of Congress and briefed Congressional Committee staff numerous times on our work in this area.
We look forward to continuing those discussions, and building on our work with law enforcement and other technology companies on these important issues.