The 2016 U.S. presidential election demonstrated the power of data, information and analysis in a number of ways. There is no disputing, the Russian Federation’s efforts to manipulate the social network engagement surrounding the election was multifaceted and all encompassing.
And while this meddling is reprehensible, it isn’t going to go away just because it was detected, and indeed, the efforts of the Russians showed how a government or any interested party can manipulate the artificial intelligence (AI) used in various social networks (Facebook and Twitter) to ensure the desired verbiage is presented to the right audience at the right time.
In other words, the Russians figured out how the algorithms and advertising platforms worked (just like you or I can) and then used them.
Let’s step back a bit. Technology jumped into the mix with respect to the candidates themselves in 2012. In 2012, we saw President Obama smoke candidate Romney in the social network milieu. One understood how to get the message out across digital media and the other, frankly, ignored the medium.
Now fast forward to the election a year ago, November 2016, and we saw the power of machine learning exercised by candidate, now President, Trump. His election campaign was tantamount to a product launch using social network engagement as the means to generate interest and to ultimately close the sale.
The Independent (UK) argues that artificial intelligence altered democracy. They specifically called out the capability demonstrated by Trump: the power of AI and machine learning. They make the case that artificial intelligence can be used to manipulate individual voters. “During the 2016 US presidential election, the data science firm Cambridge Analytica rolled out an extensive advertising campaign to target persuadable voters based on their individual psychology.”
This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog post authored by Christopher Burgess. Read the original post at: Cylance Blog