December 02, 2020

House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Approves Official Report on Spoofing & the Exploitation of Veterans Online

Press Contact

Jenni Geurink (202-819-4684)

Miguel R. Salazar 

WASHINGTON, D.C — Today, the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs approved “Hijacking our Heroes” as an official Committee report into the public record. 


This report, detailing internet spoofing-- the act of disguising an electronic communication from an unknown source to make the communication look like it is from a known, trusted source-- is based off the Committee’s November 2019 hearing and ongoing investigation into spoofing and the ways veterans may be exploited through disinformation on social media. You can read the full report here and watch Chairman Takano’s opening remarks from today’s Business Meeting here.

Read the full report here


“Last year, the Committee began investigating the issue of “spoofing,” guided by evidence which shows that veterans are particularly targeted for spoofing as they wield considerable influence and credibility in their communities, earned by virtue of their service to our country,” said Chairman Mark Takano.“Whether in California, Tennessee, or Washington, DC, veterans are a trusted community, and are listened to because of their experience and expertise in areas related to the military and national security. This report details the Committee’s findings, including the rise in problems such as spoofing and outlines a series of policy recommendations and other potential solutions. Some of these steps can, and should, be taken by the social media platforms themselves. Pretending to be a veteran, for any reason, is shameful – but it is especially so when such deception is used to spread disinformation or commit financial fraud. There is a very real, and growing, problem here and we need to work together across all viewpoints to determine how to mitigate the risks and keep online spaces as a safe place for robust exchange of ideas and information.”