Cybersecurity for Democracy

Cybersecurity for Democracy is a research-based effort to expose online threats to our social fabric – and recommend how to counter them. We are part of the Center for Cybersecurity at NYU.

Featured content

In the afternoon of January 6, 2021, Facebook leadership announced they were “appalled by the violence at the Capitol today,” and were approaching the situation “as an emergency.”

Read more

Trump-endorsed congressional candidates who spent on Facebook and Instagram ads focusing on the economy, Trump, and Ukraine fared better electorally in the 2022 midterms elections than those who focused on education, law enforcement, and abortion, according to a new analysis of the ad spending by topic of congressional candidates by NYU Cybersecurity for Democracy (C4D).

Read more

An investigation by Global Witness and the NYU Cybersecurity for Democracy (C4D) team looked at Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube's ability to detect and remove death threats against election workers in the run up to the US midterm elections.

Read more

In the lead up to the midterm elections, few U.S. Senate and House candidates are spending on Spanish-language political ads on Facebook and Instagram. Just seven candidates spent more than an estimated $5,000 on Spanish ads – a tiny portion of what is being spent on political ads in English.

Read more

A new, enhanced version of Ad Observatory is now available in English and Spanish, with increased search functionality. Compare digital political ad spending across Meta properties with this free and public dashboard.

Read more

An investigation by Global Witness and the Cybersecurity for Democracy (C4D) team at NYU looked at Facebook, TikTok, and Youtube's ability to detect and remove election disinformation in the run-up to the U.S. midterm elections. The results? TikTok approved 90% of the election disinformation ads tested, Facebook had a mixed record. Only YouTube succeeded both in detecting the ads and suspending the channel carrying them.

Read more

How you can help

Join our newsletter

Keep up to date with our latest news, blog posts, and projects.

Ad Observatory

A new, enhanced version of Ad Observatory is now available in English and Spanish. Search digital political ad spending across Meta properties with our public, free dashboard.

Install Ad Observer

Help out by contributing your Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube ads by installing the Ad Observer plug-in tool. Now in Spanish!

Latest

Recent Posts

Too little, too late

By the time harmful content posted to Facebook during the Capitol riot period came down, millions had already engaged In the afternoon of January 6, 2021, Facebook leadership announced they were “appalled by the violence at the Capitol today,” and were approaching the situation…

Abortion and Trump top topics for federal candidate political ad spending on Facebook and Instagram

Ad Observatory data provides insight on messaging associated with winning campaigns by party and other factors Trump-endorsed congressional candidates who spent on Facebook and Instagram ads focusing on the economy, Trump, and Ukraine fared better electorally in the 2022 midterms…

More posts