Feeds

Social media off to war with propaganda posts

Disinformation campaigns will start with NSFW honeypots

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Social media posts which lure readers with the promise of illegal, amoral or forbidden products and services may become a cold war cyber weapon, according to Kaspersky Labs CEO Eugene Kaspersky.

Speaking to The Register in Sydney yesterday Kaspersky said the usual suspects – Duqu, Stuxnet, whatever happened in Estonia and the regular data deletions apparently plaguing Iran – are all jolly good examples of cyberwar in action, but require a concerted effort.

Easier-to-execute, attacks, he believes, will be fought through dodgy posts to social networks.

Kaspersky’s theory is that states will create handles on social networks that initially post information about illegal (dodgy downloads or drugs), amoral (smut) or forbidden products (drugs again) in order to attract an audience. Once followers or friends have been won, the feeds will turn to dispensing propaganda. Messages of this sort won’t be explicit, Kaspersky said, but will instead represent an attempt at mass manipulation.

“A post could say ‘New Zealanders just killed several Australians,’” he said, reflecting the Antipodean location of his meeting with The Register yesterday. The cumulative effect of such posts, he feels, could demoralise or agitate a population in ways that advance international political and/or military agendas.

“You poison them, and little by little and you will have a huge conflict between countries,” he says.

All of which sounds very plausible, except for the fact that New Zealand doesn’t need disinformation to demoralise Australia: that’s what the All Blacks are for. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Webcam hacker pervs in MASS HOME INVASION
You thought you were all alone? Nope – change your password, says ICO
You really need to do some tech support for Aunty Agnes
Free anti-virus software, expires, stops updating and p0wns the world
Meet OneRNG: a fully-open entropy generator for a paranoid age
Kiwis to seek random investors for crowd-funded randomiser
USB coding anarchy: Consider all sticks licked
Thumb drive design ruled by almighty buck
Attack reveals 81 percent of Tor users but admins call for calm
Cisco Netflow a handy tool for cheapskate attackers
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.