The ATHENA Project on Eternal Vigilance as the Price of Liberty

26 March 2024

The latest blog post from the ATHENA project delves into the topic of foreign information manipulation and interference (FIMI) during the 2024 elections. It emphasises the various methods through which elections can be influenced, ranging from bribery and ballot-stuffing to cyber attacks and FIMI. In this year’s electoral landscape, the online sphere will wield significant influence in shaping campaign dynamics, information dissemination, and ultimately, election results. Consequently, the integrity and fairness of these elections can be affected.

The blog post provides insights into instances of electoral disruption caused by information manipulation, such as the Russian social media disinformation campaigns during the 2016 US presidential elections and the role of fake news and computational propaganda in India’s 2019 general elections, which resulted in a landmark victory for the Indian extreme right-wing party. Additionally, it warns of the potential utilisation of deep fake AI in this year’s parliamentary elections.

The ATHENA project, An exposition on THe forEign informatioN mAnipulation and interference, aims to detect and analyse disinformation associated with FIMI. The work of the ATHENA project is crucial for the protection of democratic processes in Europe in light of recent FIMI campaigns using disinformation and the surge in cyber-attacks originating from countries like Russia and China.

Read the blog post in full here.