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LikeWar: Weaponization of Social Media

LikeWar: The Weaponization of Social Media Peter Singer and Emerson Brooking joined Kathleen Hicks for a discussion of their new book at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on October 5, 2018. Click for a summary of this discussion Some highlights from the discussion: • LikeWar is how social media has changed news, politics and war and …

Chinese Influence in Australia and Beyond

A Conversation on Chinese Influence in Australia and Beyond The Center for Strategic and International Studies held an event to highlight Clive Hamilton’s new book, Silent Invasion: China’s Influence in Australia on October 18, 2018.  Watch on YouTube or read a summary. Some items of note from a fascinating discussion: – The distinction:  influence is transparent …

Dispatch (October 23rd) from the Alliance for Securing Democracy

This week’s Dispatch from the Alliance for Securing Democracy. News and Commentary Russian charged with information warfare against the United States tied to IRA’s Prigozhin: On October 19, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced charges against Elena Khusyaynova, a Russian national, for “Conspiracy to defraud the United States.” Khusyaynova allegedly worked since 2014 as the …

Language of Inform, Influence and Persuade

The Language of Inform, Influence and Persuade Christopher Paul and Miriam Matthews, Rand Corporation, October 18, 2018 Words matter.  Many of the terms used to discuss assessment mean different things to different staff sections, offices, organizations, and individuals.  This leads to confusion, miscommunication, and even the appearance of agreement or disagreement when the opposite is …

Russian Propaganda: McCain’s a ‘geezer,’ Ryan’s an ‘absolute nobody’

McCain’s a ‘geezer,’ and Ryan’s an ‘absolute nobody’: Russia’s playbook for sounding American in Facebook propaganda – Craig Timberg, Tony Romm and Brian Fung, Washington Post, October 19, 2018 Russian disinformation operatives had a playbook on how to pass as politically active Americans as they secretly sought to manipulate U.S. voters. The late senator John McCain …

Justice Accuses Russians Midterm Election Interference

Justice Dept. Accuses Russians of Interfering in Midterm Elections Adam Goldman, New York Times, October 19, 2018 Russians working for a close ally of Putin engaged in an elaborate campaign of information warfare to interfere with the midterm elections, federal prosecutors said on Friday.  Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova, 44, of St. Petersburg, was involved in an effort …

#TrollTracker: Assessing a Covert Iranian Influence Campaign

#TrollTracker Part Three — Assessing an covert Iranian social media influence campaign Twitter Troll Farm Archives, Digital Forensic Research Lab, Atlantic Council, October 17, 2018 Iranian trolls were aimed at influence, but it should not be confused with the concurrent Russian one. Some of its posts were aimed at polarized audiences in the U.S., notably the anti-Trump …

#TrollTracker: How the IRA Regenerated on Twitter

#TrollTracker: Part Two — How the Internet Research Agency regenerated on Twitter after its accounts were suspended Twitter Troll Farm Archives, Digital Forensic Research Lab, Atlantic Council, October 17, 2018 The chief lesson is that the Russian attempt to spread division continued after its initial accounts were suspended. This second wave of troll accounts masqueraded as hyper-partisan activists. …

#TrollTracker: Seven Take-Aways of Known Russian and Iranian Troll Operations

#TrollTracker: Part One — Seven key take aways from a comprehensive archive of known Russian and Iranian troll operations Twitter Troll Farm Archives, Digital Forensic Research Lab, Atlantic Council, October 17, 2018 On October 17, Twitter released an archive of over ten million tweets posted and over nine million tweets were attributable to 3,800 accounts affiliated with the …

Twitter Enabling Info Ops Research

Twitter released all the accounts and related content associated with potential information operations found on their service since 2016. These large datasets comprise 3,841 accounts affiliated with the IRA, originating in Russia, and 770 other accounts, potentially originating in Iran. They include more than 10 million Tweets and more than 2 million images, GIFs, videos, …