The Ripon Advance: Kinzinger sponsors two bills aimed at fighting social media fraud

U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) last week introduced two bills to help combat social media scams by holding violators more accountable and requiring platforms to take more responsibility with user protections.

“Technology is critical to our everyday life, especially right now when we are all social distancing from one another,” Rep. Kinzinger said on April 23. “But malign activity and misinformation on the internet are very real problems that need to be addressed.”

Rep. Kinzinger on April 21 sponsored the Social Media Accountability and Account Verification Act, H.R. 6586, to prohibit the creation and use of fake social media accounts or profiles and the sending of fraudulent emails or other electronic messages, and to require certain social media companies to remove fake or harmful accounts and profiles from their platforms, according to the congressional record summary.

Additionally, Rep. Kinzinger on Tuesday sponsored the Social Media Fraud Mitigation Act, H.R. 6587, to prohibit the creation and use of fake social media accounts or profiles and the sending of fraudulent emails or other electronic messages, according to the text of the bill.

“By introducing these two bills, I hope to draw attention to the very real problem at hand and encourage my colleagues to join me in this effort,” Rep. Kinzinger said.

If enacted, the congressman said that H.R. 6586 would require the Federal Trade Commission to institute a rule requiring more action from social media companies to field and investigate complaints about deceptive accounts or other fraudulent activity on their platforms.

“This measure also holds individuals accountable if they continually make complaints or file reports in bad faith, or if they falsely accuse individuals of deceptive behavior,” said Rep. Kinzinger.

The second bill, H.R. 6587, would create criminal penalties for the individuals who create deceptive accounts and engage in fraudulent behavior, he said, adding that “it’s important that we’re protecting consumers of the social media platforms, and holding perpetrators of malign behavior accountable.”

“Today is a starting point,” Rep. Kinzinger said. “More needs to be done to help victims of this type of fraud, and I’m committed to doing whatever I can to help curb this deceptive activity on social media and hold bad actors accountable.”

 

The original article can be found on The Ripon Advance website here.