Initially a member of Potere Operaio, in 1973, together with other future members of the Red Brigades (or BR) such as Bruno Seghetti and Valerio Morucci, she founded the extremist group LAP (Lotta Armata Potere Proletario, meaning "Armed Struggle - Proletarian Power"). Later she was part of the Roman "column" of the BR, and became a member of national council of the Red Brigades.
In 1978 she took part in the kidnapping of former prime minister Aldo Moro. According to her declarations during the ensuing trial, she was, along with Morucci, against the execution of the politician; when the latter was killed, Faranda abandoned the BR, after which she entered other formations connected to far-left leader Franco Piperno.
Faranda had been identified as the woman who had bought the fake Alitalia uniforms used by the ambushers of Moro's escort, and was arrested in Rome in May 1979, together with Morucci, in the house of KGB agent Giuliana Conforto. Due to her dissociation from the BR (she admitted her crimes but did not denounce other members), she was released in 1994, before her sentence had expired.
Faranda wrote an autobiography in which she described the years she spent in jail.
- Faranda, Adriana (2006). Il volo della Farfalla. Rizzoli.
- Mazzocchi, Silvana (1994). Nell'anno della Tigre. Storia di Adriana Faranda. Baldini, Castoldi e Dalai.