DHS Covered Up Its Outsourcing of ‘Misinformation’ Policing

A new report from a congressional committee reveals that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) actively outsourced its work on censoring so-called “misinformation” to outside groups, then covered up such efforts.

According to Just The News, the report from the House Judiciary Committee highlights the DHS’ Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and its “censorship operation,” which was formally assigned to a nonprofit group funded by DHS. This move came after a lawsuit was filed against DHS by the attorneys general of Louisiana and Missouri alleging violations of the First Amendment by the agency.

The agency handed such tasks over to the Center for Internet Security (CIS), and its Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) and Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center (EI-ISAC). By doing so after the aforementioned legal action had taken place, the report states, DHS was “implicitly admitting that its censorship activities are unconstitutional.” CISA’s Cybersecurity Advisory Committee also established a subcommittee called “Protecting Critical Infrastructure from Misinformation & Disinformation.”

Notes from a spring 2022 meeting of the committee reveal that the committee members were “fully aware” of the “severe public outcry” when DHS initially announced its new “Disinformation Governance Board,” which was eventually shut down due to widespread backlash. As a result, DHS turned to third parties to implement a similar pro-censorship agenda in an attempt to avoid the same controversy.

Two of the leading figures of this attempt, former CIA legal advisor Suzanne Spaulding and CISA’s Election Security Initiative chief Geoff Hale, had openly “suggested designating the ISACs as the clearing house for information to avoid the appearance of government propaganda.” Spaulding later said in an email that it was “only a matter of time” before these efforts also became public, suggesting that committee members should be “proactive in telling our story.”

In its report, the Judiciary Committee said that CISA “still has not adequately complied with a subpoena for relevant documents, and much more factfinding is necessary.”

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About Eric Lendrum

Eric Lendrum graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he was the Secretary of the College Republicans and the founding chairman of the school’s Young Americans for Freedom chapter. He has interned for Young America’s Foundation, the Heritage Foundation, and the White House, and has worked for numerous campaigns including the 2018 re-election of Congressman Devin Nunes (CA-22). He is currently a co-host of The Right Take podcast.

Photo: Evegnii Nessirio of Seattle, a Russian citizen who was scheduled for his citizenship interview, stands outside following a two-week closure of a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) building and US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) field office because of an employee who may be infected with the novel coronavirus in Tukwila, Washington on March 3, 2020. - The US death toll from the new coronavirus epidemic rose to seven on March 3 after authorities confirmed that a nursing home patient who died last week was infected with the disease. All seven US deaths from COVID-19, as the virus is called, have been in Washington state. (Photo by Jason Redmond / AFP) (Photo by JASON REDMOND/AFP via Getty Images)