Facebook says it will literally go to war on bad actors seeking to disrupt the upcoming US Mid-term elections. The company says it is building a physical “war room” that will be located at its Menlo Park headquarters. Essentially a computer lab, the room will seek to prevent election meddling.
Speaking to NBC News, Samidh Chakrabarti, head of civic engagement for the company, said the company is ready for all outcomes. That is in contrast to the last presidential race where Facebook was slow to react to Russian manipulation.
“We’ve been building this war room, a physical war room [with] people across the company, of all different disciplines, who are there. So, as we discover problems that may come up in the hours leading up to the election, we can take quick and decisive action.”
The social network come under massive criticism for its role in the last US Presidential Elections. A recent scandal involving Cambridge Analytica shows data from Facebook did affect the elections.
In an effort to repair its reputation and shore up its defences, Facebook has developed the war room to seek out and destroy any interference. The US midterms will happen on November 6, so Facebook is preparing its front lines well ahead of time.
“We’re remaining ever vigilant, laser-focused to make sure that we can stay ahead of new problems that emerge. This is going to be a never-ending process,” Chakrabarti said.
The latest update on the war room expands on what Chakrabarti told Recode in August. He confirmed the room will be a computing lab with several screens monitoring Facebook usage metrics. Alarms will sound when there are unexpected changes in the metric data.
“The war room isn’t so much about the technology that’s there as it is about the process of having people across different functions… be able to diagnose and fix any sort of acute issues that we see,” Chakrabarti said.