H.R. 4782 would require the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to research how online platforms may be used to facilitate acts of terrorism. On the basis of information from DHS regarding the costs of similar research efforts, CBO estimates implementing that provision would cost $4 million.
The bill also would establish a national commission to study how entities have used social media and other online platforms to threaten U.S. national security. The commission would be required to provide recommendations on ways to mitigate the effects of online terrorist content and electoral-disinformation campaigns. The commission would terminate after two years. Using information about the costs of similar commissions, CBO estimates that staff salaries, security clearance costs, and other expenses would be $1 million.
In total, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would increase spending by $5 million over the 2020-2024 period; such spending would be subject to the availability of appropriations.