The Election Influence Operations Playbook

By Defending Digital Democracy/The Belfer Center

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The threat of Influence Operations (IO) strikes the core of our democracy by seeking to influence hearts and minds with divisive and often false information. Although malicious actors are targeting the whole of society, the upcoming “The Election Influence Operations Playbook” focuses on a subset of influence operations—the types of disinformation attacks and misinformation incidents most commonly seen around elections, where election officials are best positioned to counter them.

This Playbook includes guides that aim to provide election officials with resources and recommendations on how to navigate information threats targeting elections. It offers an introduction to Election Influence Operations: what they are, how they work, and why they can impact our elections. It also includes recommendations for reporting, responding and countering mis and disinformation incidents around elections.

This Playbook is meant to be a starting point and can be adapted for a jurisdiction’s needs. We hope it will be a useful resource for state and local election officials working to protect our elections and democracy from these evolving threats.

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