information warfare

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information warfare

(1) The distribution of a cultural, political or religious point of view that is aimed at discrediting and scandalizing opposing thought. See disinformation and social media.

(2) Also called "cyberterrorism" and "cyberwarfare," information warfare refers to cyberattacks that create havoc on a large scale. Some examples are disrupting the computers that manage stock exchanges, power grids, air traffic control, telecommunications and defense systems. Viruses, Trojans and denial-of-service attacks are part of the information warfare arsenal, and they get more sophisticated every year.

The first book to deal with the subject was "Information Warfare: Chaos on the Electronic Superhighway," by Winn Schwartau, written in 1994 just as the Internet was being commercialized. Published in 2012, "Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security" by Richard A. Clarke and Robert K. Knake is an eye-opening book on the subject.

Before a Shooting War
Information warfare is increasingly considered as the first offensive before the start of a physical attack. The military in many countries have full-time cyberwarriors on the payroll, because the more successful a cyberattack on an early warning defense system is, the greater the success of the real attack. According to "Cyber War," North Korea may have as many as a thousand hackers stationed in China, working on knocking out systems in South Korea and other countries. See virus, Trojan, cyberattack and denial-of-service attack.
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References in periodicals archive ?
(27) In a crisis with nuclear weapons available to the side against which infowar is used, crippling the foe's intelligence and command and control systems is an objective possibly at variance with controlling conflict and prevailing at an acceptable cost.
"[T]he nation's myraid of computer-controlled networks, the phone switches, the powergrid, the air-traffic control system, the banks, can all be wrecked during a war or crisis by hostile hackers funded and protected by countries such as Iran...." Id.; see also George Leopold, "Infowar": Can Bits Really Replace Bullets?, ELEC.
For an analysis of these issues outside the infowar arena, see LT.
All of this shows that infowar is far more than mere hacker war.
Politically minded agency press secretaries objected to the prospect of a bureaucrat in the State Department telling them what their boss should say in public, and civil agencies--especially the State Department--are still loath to accept anything that smacks of the Pentagon's infowar vision.
But the Pentagon's infowar vision is very influential, largely because the Pentagon is the intellectual leader in the area.
Government officials know the infowar vision is also much broader than the government, often demanding more from the private sector than it can grant.
This broad strategy should link the hacker war aspect of infowar to the public information aspect, implement incentives that push agencies to share vital information, establish a "guarded openness" export policy that balances the benefits from trade deals against harms to the nation's security, create a central coordinating group to implement this strategy, and set procedures to shape and direct U.S.-hacker attacks.
As can be expected from the provocative title, the piece is a sophisticated infowar assault on multiple targets such as civil-military relations, ISI, and the Army, with the intent being to drive wedges between them.
Her official website describes her storied career in the civil service that even included a stint as 'director of naval research at the Naval headquarters, Islamabad', and while SAATH's 'Reaffirmation for a Liberal, Democratic, Secular, Progressive Pakistan' has a point in principle with concluding on the note that 'dissent is patriotic', the case can be made that it's actually the exact opposite of patriotic for a former official of her status to informally collaborate with a hostile nation by releasing a de-facto seditious infowar piece published by none other than a likely RAW-backed newspaper whose Editor-in-Chief wrote about why he wanted India to nuke Pakistan.
As such, it's not unlikely that one or both of these intelligence agencies passively facilitated her piece's publication because it shares the same goals as they do, which is to exploit Lt-Gen Hameed's appointment as a trigger for aggravating civil-military relations and provoking intra-military rivalries through a carefully crafted infowar attack against the new DG ISI.