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Hillicon Valley — Report says Meta profits from hate groups

A new report found that social media giant Facebook has profited from searches and ads for white supremacist groups, but the company said it has corrected the issue.  

Meanwhile, Tesla CEO Elon Musk teased creating his own social media platform. 

This is Hillicon Valley, detailing all you need to know about tech and cyber news from Capitol Hill to Silicon Valley. Send tips to The Hill’s Rebecca Klar and Ines Kagubare. Someone forward you this newsletter? Subscribe here.

Report targets online hate on Facebook

Facebook has profited from searches and ads for white supremacist groups on its platform, according to a report released Wednesday from the Tech Transparency Project (TTP).  

The TTP investigation found ads monetizing search results for some white supremacist groups, of which there are more than 80 using Facebook as a hub, according to the report. The ads weren’t for the white supremacist groups themselves, but generated revenue for the social media giant when they appeared in searches. 

  • A Facebook spokesperson said on Wednesday that the platform has corrected the issue. 
  • The 80-group count found in the report amounts to more than a third of
    226 total white supremacist groups labeled as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Anti-Defamation League and Facebook.  
  • Meta says it has designated 270 groups under that label and has banned them all from the platform. 

Read more here.

Musk teases social media platform

Elon Musk on Tuesday evening appeared to tease creating his own social media platform if he does not ultimately buy Twitter. 

“Have you thought about creating your own social platform? If Twitter deal doesn’t come through,” an account titled Tesla Owners Silicon Valley asked the billionaire on Twitter.  

“,” Musk wrote in response. 

In 1999, Musk co-founded an online financial services company with the same name. merged in 2000 with Confinity, which developed the PayPal electronic payment system. 

The domain for Musk’s former company now connects users to a page that displays a singular “x” on a blank background. 

Read more here.


Finland’s parliament website was temporarily down on Tuesday following a cyberattack that coincided with President Biden’s move to admit the Nordic country to NATO. 

The Finnish parliament said in a statement on Twitter that a denial-of-service attack hit the parliament’s external websites at around 2:30 p.m. local time. 

“The Parliament takes steps to limit the attack together with service providers and the Cybersecurity Center,” the statement said.  

On Wednesday, the parliament announced on Twitter that the website returned to normal on Tuesday night.  

The attack against the parliament occurred the same day Biden signed a measure backing Finland and Sweden’s admittance into NATO. 

Read more here.


An op-ed to chew on: New digital privacy bills won’t protect women seeking abortions 

Notable links from around the web: 

The Boy Bosses of Silicon Valley Are on Their Way Out (The New York Times / Erin Griffith) 

Teens have fled Facebook but are loyal to YouTube, poll shows (The Washington Post / Heather Kelly) 

How Trump changed Facebook (Vox / Shirin Ghaffary and Alex Heath)

Lighter click: Man in the mirror

One more thing: EU heads to Silicon Valley

The European Union is opening a new liaison office in California’s Silicon Valley to streamline communication with U.S. tech companies, as new laws are set to go into effect that will ramp up regulation of the technology sector in Europe. 

The EU’s executive branch, the European Commission, will run the new tech embassy, according to the Wall Street Journal. Gerard de Graaf, a senior executive at the European Commission who has worked on technology legislation, will lead the office in the San Francisco Bay area. 

The office will open on Sept. 1, according to the newspaper. 

Big Tech companies like Apple, Google and Meta will be subject to new laws in the EU’s 27-nation member bloc. 

Read more here.

That’s it for today, thanks for reading. Check out The Hill’s Technology and Cybersecurity pages for the latest news and coverage. We’ll see you tomorrow.



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