U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, member of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, released a statement about a declassified report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) that highlighted the heightened threat posed by domestic violent extremism in 2021 and that how white supremacist and militia extremists pose the most lethal threat to our country. In the wake of recent targeted attacks against Asian Americans across the country, and in New York, the timely declassified report outlines how perpetrators often radicalize by consuming violent extremist material online.
“The events of January 6, the attack in Atlanta, the near-daily reports of anti-Semitic graffiti, and the continued rise of attacks against Asian Americans throughout the pandemic should be a wakeup call to the urgent need to tackle domestic violent extremism in this country and I will be using my role on the Senate Intelligence Committee to find solutions,” said Senator Gillibrand. “It’s clear that Big Tech companies facilitate and profit from the spread of hateful views and that the unchecked power of major social media platforms is having detrimental consequences in our society. It is critical that we create a Data Protection Agency with dedicated technologists to inform and guide Congress about the most effective policy remedies to remove dangers and violent extremist movements from online platforms, so that we can take the necessary steps to keep Americans safe.”
Gillibrand previously announced landmark legislation, The Data Protection Act which would create an executive agency to protect consumer data and prepare the federal government to respond in real-time to growing online threats. Gillibrand also joined fellow lawmakers in a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg calling on the company to fully address the problem of anti-Muslim bigotry on its platform, which has enabled offline violence against Muslims in the United States and elsewhere around the world.