This interdisciplinary Handbook provides an in-depth analysis of the complex security phenomenon of disinformation and offers a toolkit to counter such tactics.
Disinformation used to propagate false, inexact or out of context information is today a frequently used tool of political manipulation and information warfare, both online and offline. This Handbook evidences a historical thread of continuing practices and modus operandi in overt state propaganda and covert information operations. Further, it attempts to unveil current methods used by propaganda actors, the inherent vulnerabilities they exploit in the fabric of democratic societies and, last but not least, to highlight current practices in countering disinformation and building resilient audiences.
The Handbook is divided into six thematic sections. The first part provides a set of theoretical approaches to hostile influencing, disinformation and covert information operations. The second part looks at disinformation and propaganda in historical perspective offering case study analysis of disinformation, and the third focuses on providing understanding of the contemporary challenges posed by disinformation and hostile influencing. The fourth part examines information and communication practices used for countering disinformation and building resilience. The fifth part analyses specific regional experiences in countering and deterring disinformation, as well as international policy responses from transnational institutions and security practitioners. Finally, the sixth part offers a practical toolkit for practitioners to counter disinformation and hostile influencing.
This handbook will be of much interest to students of national security, propaganda studies, media and communications studies, intelligence studies and International Relations in general.
Rubén Arcos, Irena Chiru and Cristina Ivan
Part I. Theoretical Perspectives: Concepts and Definitions
1. Hybrid Security Threats and the Information Domain: Concepts and Definitions
Cristina Ivan, Irena Chiru, and Rubén Arcos
2. Deterrence by Denial and Resilience Building
James Pamment and Bjorn Palmertz
3. Military Deception and Perception Management
James J. Wirtz
Part II. Historical Perspectives
4. Cold War Active Measures
5. Historical Disinformation Practices: Learning from the Russians
Randolph H. Pherson, Deanna Labriny, and Abby Diorio
6. Influence Operations and the Role of Intelligence
7. Asymmetrical Conflict in the Information Domain: The Case of Russia
Bjorn Palmertz and James Pamment
Part III. Contemporary Challenges
8. Disinformation: The Jihadists’ New Religion
9. Digital Disinformation, Electoral Interference, and Systemic Distrust
10. A Perception Management Take on Propaganda as Political Warfare
11. The Use and Abuse of History by Russian Embassies on Twitter: The Case of the Baltic States
Corneliu Bjola and Ilan Manor
12. Using Mimetic and Rhetorical Theory to Critique a Disinformation Consensus: The Problem of "Personal Vigilance"
Hamilton Bean and Bryan C. Taylor
13. Deepfake Disinformation: How Digital Deception and Synthetic Media Threaten National Security
14. The Strategic Logic of Digital Disinformation: Offense, Defence and Deterrence in Information Warfare
H. Akin Unver and Arhan S. Ertan
15. Conspiracy Theories and Unfounded Rumours in Contemporary Democracies: Beyond Truth and Trust
16. Cognitive Warfare: Understanding the Threat
Alina Bârgăoanu and Flavia Durach
Part IV. Countering Disinformation and Building Resilience
17. Journalistic Approaches to Information Sources, Fact-Checking, Verification and Detached Reporting
18. A National Security Perspective on Information Leaks
Aitana Radu and Joseph Cannataci
19. An Ethical Understanding of Military Strategic Communication, Public Relations, and Persuasion
Irena Chiru and Ruxandra Buluc
20. Emotional Diplomacy in Times of Uncertainty and Disinformation
Tereza Capelos and Grete Krisciunaite
21. Open-Source Information for Intelligence Purposes: The Challenge of Disinformation
22. Protective Factors Against Disinformation
Part V. General Trends and Regional Specificities in Countering Disinformation
23. The EU Approach to Combating Disinformation: Between Censorship and the "Market for Information"
24. The Strategic Security Environment and NATO’s Perspectives in Developing Effective Strategic Communications (2014-2022)
25. The Baltic Experience in Countering Contemporary Russian Disinformation
26. The Disinformation Threat: Lessons from the Chinese Experience
Dan Dungaciu and Lucian Dumitrescu
27. The Perils of Disinformation in Latin America
Florina Cristiana (Cris) Matei
Part VI: A Toolkit for Practitioners
28. The Use of Discourse Analysis in Propaganda Detection and Understanding
29. Anticipatory Approaches to Disinformation, Warning and Supporting Technologies
Rubén Arcos and Cristina M. Arribas
30. AI Technologies to Support Detection of Information Manipulation on Social Networks and Online Media: A Quick Overview
31. Wargaming Disinformation Campaigns
Conclusions - Analysing and Assessing Disinformation and Hostile Influencing
'Supported and edited by excellent and up to date experts, this handbook is a most timely and highly pertinent contribution to a multidisciplinary and comprehensive understanding of one of the core challenges for our present and future security in freedom and prosperity. It should be used as a core reference for all academic and operational endeavours in this field.'
Gerhard Conrad, Former Director of the European Union Intelligence Analysis and Situation Centre (EU INTCEN)
'Like nuclear war shaped the XX century, hybrid and information wars will shape the XXI century. On the battlefield and in the AI labs, shaping politics and public opinion, the forces of disinformation threaten freedom and human rights. This book is a powerful handbook for leaders, scholars, and citizens eager to defend democracy.'
Gianni Riotta, Princeton University, USA