Iraqi security forces latest weapon? Facebook

If one thing has become clear in the past year or two, it is that even more than in the rest of our lives, on the internet and social media, appearances can be deceiving. From Russian trolling operations that we've heard so much about in the news, to less widely covered (and seemingly less effective) … Continue reading Iraqi security forces latest weapon? Facebook

Social media business models under fire

As controversy continues over investigations into Russian online disinformation programs, the business models of tech companies, and social media companies in particular, have become the target of a growing chorus of criticism. Last week, lawyers for Facebook, Google and Twitter testified on Capitol Hill about Russian purchases of political ads and manipulation of their platforms. … Continue reading Social media business models under fire

Military using fake internet to train trolls

A new social media simulation program gives the U.S. military the capability to train its information operators for a wide range of cyber deception and propaganda operations without going on the real internet. The tool, called the Social Media Replication Toolkit System (SMRTS) and developed by the San Diego-based Cubic Corporation, "harvests and remixes real … Continue reading Military using fake internet to train trolls

U.S. should test propaganda before using it, psy-ops commander says

The Pentagon's propaganda activities -- what it now euphemistically refers to as "military information support operations" (MISO) -- have a long history of both using trickery and deception to provide incredible tactical advantages in some cases, and failing spectacularly in others. "When employed correctly Military Information Support Operations (MISO--formerly PSYOP [psychological operations]) as a force … Continue reading U.S. should test propaganda before using it, psy-ops commander says

Truth, lies and Reality Winner

The day after NBC News aired an exclusive interview with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and just days before former FBI Director James Comey's highly anticipated testimony on his investigation into potential Trump administration collusion with Russia, another sensational storyline related to Russian meddling in the U.S. election emerged June 5 -- this one threatening to … Continue reading Truth, lies and Reality Winner

Facebook releases ‘information operations’ report, update on govt. data requests

"I think the idea that fake news on Facebook ... influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said back in November, following Donald Trump's poll-defying win. A new report from the company, however, titled "Information Operations and Facebook," shows just how far the social media giant's position has … Continue reading Facebook releases ‘information operations’ report, update on govt. data requests

‘Performance artist’ Alex Jones ‘playing a character,’ his lawyer says

Alex Jones, radio show host and founder of the popular fringe news site InfoWars.com, has long been a controversial figure -- for everything from his outspoken support for President Donald Trump to his promotion of outlandish conspiracy theories such as the idea that extraterrestrial reptilian shapeshifters secretly rule the world. Jones has not only stoked … Continue reading ‘Performance artist’ Alex Jones ‘playing a character,’ his lawyer says

Wikileaks ‘Year Zero’ release reveals CIA hacking capabilities

Following the Edward Snowden leaks four years ago that revealed extensive and detailed information on the National Security Agency's mass surveillance programs, media reports surfaced indicating that Russia‚Äôs Federal Guard Service was reverting to using typewriters and paper documents in an attempt to avoid the pervasive monitoring of the digital age. But if Russia's response … Continue reading Wikileaks ‘Year Zero’ release reveals CIA hacking capabilities

U.S. and Russia escalate information war

So much has been written in the wake of the U.S. presidential election on the topic of Russian propaganda that it can be hard to keep up, especially given that some of America's most supposedly-reputable news outlets such as the Washington Post have routinely published questionable material on the subject. But a few new developments … Continue reading U.S. and Russia escalate information war

Weaponizing the narrative in the information war with Russia

Well, it's 2017, and in less than three weeks, Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. This surreal situation still has many scratching their heads, wondering how it came to be. While some are coming to terms with Trump's election as a symptom of a broken system that … Continue reading Weaponizing the narrative in the information war with Russia