PayPal Holdings Inc. and the Anti-Defamation League on Monday announced a new partnership initiative to fight extremism and hate through the financial industry and across at-risk communities. According to their press release, this is the latest effort by PayPal in combating racism, hate, and extremism across its platforms and the industry (until it backfires).
Through this collaboration, PayPal and ADL have launched a research effort to address the urgent need to understand how extremist and hate movements throughout the U.S. are attempting to leverage financial platforms to fund criminal activity. The intelligence gathered through this research initiative will be shared broadly across the financial industry and with policymakers and law enforcement.
“By identifying partners across sectors with common goals and complementary resources, we can make an even greater impact than any of us could do on our own,” said Aaron Karczmer, Chief Risk Officer and EVP, Risk and Platforms, PayPal. “We are excited to partner with the ADL, other non-profits, and law enforcement in our fight against hate in all its forms.”
The initiative with PayPal will be led through ADL’s Center on Extremism, a leading authority on extremism, terrorism, and hate. PayPal and ADL will focus on further uncovering and disrupting the financial pipelines that support extremist and hate movements.
In addition to extremist and anti-government organizations (what exactly is an anti-government organization?), the initiative will focus on actors and networks spreading and profiting from all forms of hate and bigotry against any community (be careful if you post something negative about X).
“All of us, including in the private sector, have a critical role to play in fighting the spread of extremism and hate. With this new initiative, we’re setting a new standard for companies to bring their expertise to critical social issues,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO, ADL. “We have a unique opportunity to further understand how hate spreads and develop key insights that will inform the efforts of the financial industry, law enforcement, and our communities in mitigating extremist threats.”
Core to the PayPal and ADL initiative is the establishment and expansion of a coalition with other civil rights partner organizations, such as the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), to protect marginalized communities against extremism. PayPal and ADL will work closely with these organizations to share trends in extremism and hate with marginalized and vulnerable communities with the goal of helping to empower and safeguard those communities which are frequent targets of hate groups and extremist acts.
“This innovative partnership between ADL and PayPal encourages us to think outside the box when fighting evil,” said Sindy Benavides, CEO, LULAC. “We hope to see more private and public partnerships such as these to help raise the social awareness of the public to the dangers that exist in plain sight. Attacking these hateful groups’ revenue sources weakens their reach and exposes just how unstable they truly are. The data and research collected from experts will help organizations, like LULAC, inform their strategy to combat evil. We congratulate these organizations and will continue to stand alongside them against hate.”
“I applaud PayPal and the ADL for joining forces to combat hate and extremist movements who seek to utilize financial platforms to bankroll their criminal activities and profit from the spread of racism and bigotry,” said Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance, Jr. “My office stands ready to assist financial institutions and businesses of all kinds in this urgent fight to stop hate and protect members of historically marginalized communities.”
ADL has been combating extremist threats across the ideological spectrum for decades. Its staff of investigators, analysts, researchers, and technical experts strategically monitors, exposes, and disrupts extremist threats – on the internet and on the ground. ADL provides resources, expertise, and educational briefings that enable law enforcement providers, public officials, and community leaders, as well as internet and technology companies, to identify and counter emerging threats.
This partnership is the most recent example of PayPal extending the reach of its financial crimes capabilities through multi-sector collaborations to address critical societal and community issues. PayPal also maintains partnerships with Polaris to combat human trafficking through a joint Financial Intelligence Unit, as well as a multi-sector research initiative to better understand illegal firearm trafficking and financing.
The very dark side of all this, as the PragerU video above shows, leftwing organizations have a history of declaring political conservatives as rightwing extremists, and who knows who will find themselves banned from one of the world’s most popular online financial systems. As Facebook and Twitter proved, it could even be the President of the United States… or you.