Chinese cyber group running election misinformation campaign: cybersecurity firm

The report alleged that the group impersonated Intrusion Truth, a group that targets malicious Chinese cyber groups, to generate credibility for its false claims.

Updated: October 26, 2022 - 11:36pm

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A pro-China cyber group has been running an extensive campaign to undermine voter confidence in U.S. elections and to suppress turnout in the upcoming midterm contests, one U.S. cybersecurity firm alleges in a recent report.

DRAGONBRIDGE, a pro-China operation, has waged a campaign of misinformation and division, heavily utilizing plagiarized and altered news articles, U.S. cybersecurity firm Mandiant alleges. It further asserts that DRAGONBRIDGE operatives have made extensive use of false digital personas to spread misinformation.

The report alleged that the group impersonated Intrusion Truth, a group that targets malicious Chinese cyber groups, to generate credibility for its false claims, among them an assertion that a known Chinese digital threat group, APT41, was an American-created false flag operation.

Moreover, the group allegedly was found "altering news articles to create fabricated content" that it would then distribute via social media. In combination with that effort, members of the group would use fake accounts to pose as readers of the material.

"Most notably, in September 2022, DRAGONBRIDGE accounts posted an English-language video across multiple social media platforms containing content attempting to discourage Americans from voting in the upcoming U.S. midterm elections," the report alleges. "The video questioned the efficacy of voting and of U.S. government institutions more broadly."

"The campaign also pointed to frequent mentions of 'civil war' on social media and incidents of politically motivated violence, including confrontations between individuals supporting opposing parties and acts against the FBI, as evidence of the deterioration of the political process and its impending demise," it continued.

The report comes amid a reported Biden administration effort to keep social media platform TikTok operating in the United States while protecting American user data from Chinese digital actors and the ruling communist party.

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