Disinformation Shield uncovers illicit actors on the fringes of the dark web and combats disinformation, Sander van der Linden of Cambridge University and Graham Brookie of Atlantic Council named advisors

NEW YORK – February 23, 2021 – Today, Edelman announces the launch of Edelman’s Disinformation Shield, a global solution designed to help the private sector combat disinformation that could threaten their business interests.

Edelman’s newest CommsTech offering, Disinformation Shield will enable companies to monitor for disinformation, including on the dark web, and combat it with transparency and fact-based communications campaigns. The global team behind the offering includes corporate reputation and crisis specialists, predictive intelligence experts, behavioral scientists, and psychometric analysts.

Disinformation Shield is co-led by Edelman global corporate practice chair Jim O’Leary and Edelman Chief Data and Analytics Officer Yannis Kotziagkiaouridis. Graham Brookie, Managing Editor of The Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab, and Sander van der Linden, Professor of Social Psychology at the University of Cambridge and Director of the Cambridge Social Decision-Making Lab, are serving as senior advisors.

“The 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer has revealed an epidemic of disinformation, with more than two out of three executives at large global companies worrying about the weaponization of false information", said Jim O’Leary, Edelman global corporate practice chair. “In some instances, we’ve already seen this ‘infodemic’ adversely affected a company’s share price, destroy a brand’s loyal customer base, and even threaten the safety of some executives and their families.”

“The evolution of media manipulation and disinformation online requires us to completely rethink the traditional communications playbook,” said Yannis Kotziagkiaouridis, Chief Data and Analytics Officer and Head of Edelman Data & Intelligence (DxI). “We’re combining the most diverse data and cognitive science tools available to intercept and disrupt disinformation in real-time.”

The Disinformation Shield’s technology stack uses sophisticated and proprietary technology to uncover illicit actors and identify at-risk audience segments, using the latest techniques in advanced algorithms, stakeholder modeling, and highly-targeted and measurable messaging campaigns. It draws on Edelman’s deep investment in Data & Intelligence (DxI), the new business unit led by Kotziagkiaouridis, a Wunderman Thompson veteran. Together, Edelman’s people, processes, and technologies allow companies to intercept disinformation with messaging designed to break through the psychological tools deployed by threat actors.

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About Edelman

Edelman is a global communications firm that partners with businesses and organizations to evolve, promote and protect their brands and reputations. Our 6,000 people in more than 60 offices deliver communications strategies that give our clients the confidence to lead and act with certainty, earning the trust of their stakeholders. Our honors include the Cannes Lions Grand Prix for PR; Advertising Age’s 2019 A-List; the Holmes Report’s 2018 Global Digital Agency of the Year; and, five times, Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work. Since our founding in 1952, we have remained an independent, family-run business. Edelman owns specialty companies Edelman Data x Intelligence (research, data) and United Entertainment Group (entertainment, sports, lifestyle).

About Edelman Data & Intelligence

Edelman Data & Intelligence (DxI) is a global, multidisciplinary research, analytics and data consultancy with a distinctly human mission. We use data and intelligence to help businesses and organizations build trusting relationships with people: making communications more authentic, engagement more exciting and connections more meaningful. DxI brings together and integrates the necessary people-based PR, communications, social, research and exogenous data, as well as the technology infrastructure to create, collect, store and manage first-party data and identity resolution. DxI is comprised of over 350 research specialists, business scientists, data engineers, behavioral and machine-learning experts and data strategy consultants based in 15 markets around the world.