TORONTO, June 24, 2020
- Alex Stamos warns of the "extremely aggressive" environment surrounding the US presidential election and the potential for disinformation to interfere with the democratic process
- Facebook's former head of security said the company needs to start thinking how it's making racial inequality worse in the US and change accordingly
- Stamos joined WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington, The Handmaid's Tale author Margaret Atwood, and NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O'Neal at the 30,000-attendee online event Collision from Home
TORONTO, June 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Facebook's head of security during the 2016 US presidential election today said "Covid has created a chaotic situation on the ground," which could lead to increased instability during the 2020 election. Alex Stamos made the remarks at the 30,000-attendee online conference Collision from Home – produced by the team behind Web Summit, the largest tech conference in the world.
"In a disinformation environment that continues to be extremely aggressive, I'm really afraid of what's going to happen. What I'm really afraid is not between now and election day, but the three or four days after election day, because in a vote-by-mail situation it is possible we won't know who the president is for three or four days, and that's going to be a really open time for people to spin that delay as something nefarious," said Stamos.
Stamos went on to address Facebook's role in race relations in the US, saying the company should focus on not making things worse, rather than trying to fix US society.
"Facebook is not going to fix 400 years of racial inequality in the United States but what it can do is think, 'What are the things we do that make things worse?' and to be careful to balance the fact that there are people with individual beliefs that the executives of Facebook don't agree with that need to exist, but to allow those things to exist in a way that it does not have a viral aspect," he said.
Watch a clip from the interview here.
About Alex Stamos:
Alex Stamos is working to improve the security and safety of the internet through his teaching and research at Stanford University. He previously served as chief information security officer at Yahoo! and Facebook.
Collision is known by CBC as the "TIFF for tech", while Inc. Magazine calls it the "fastest-growing tech conference in North America". Collision is set to move online for 2020 with Collision from Home. Collision will return to Toronto as a physical event for the second year from June 21-24, 2021 at the Enercare Centre.
About Web Summit:
Forbes says Web Summit is "the best tech conference on the planet"; Bloomberg calls it "Davos for geeks"; Politico, "the Olympics of tech"; The Guardian, "Glastonbury for geeks"; and, in the words of Inc. Magazine, "Web Summit is the largest technology conference in the world".
Whatever Web Summit is, it wouldn't be possible without an incredible team of over 200 employees based in Dublin, Lisbon, Toronto and Hong Kong, including world-class engineers, data scientists, designers, producers, marketers, salespeople, and more. They've disrupted an old industry by building incredible software and designing mind-blowing events, revolutionising how people and ideas come together to change the world.
Collision schedule: https://collisionconf.com/schedule