Volume 19, Issue 1

Volume 19, Issue 1 Editorial

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March 2020

These are exciting times for the Journal of Information Warfare as we have recently published two special editions: the first with the Partnership for Countering Influence Operations (PCIO), housed by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (for more on this initiative, see https://carne-gieendowment.org/specialprojects/counteringinfluenceoperat...), and the second with the cadre of experts from and affiliated with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Wash-ington. In the next eighteen months or so, in addition to our regular issues, we’ll partner with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in South Africa on a special edition; work with a group of ICCWS researchers and experts to produce an edition that focuses on big data and privacy, legal perspectives, and cyber-physical systems’ security; and, under the guidance of our first Chief Editor, Bill Hutchinson, deliver a 20th-anniversary edition featuring the authors of the inaugural volume of JIW.

A Cyber Counterintelligence Matrix for Outsmarting Your Adversaries


While Cyber CounterIntelligence (CCI) has been a distinctive specialisation field for state security structures internationally for well over a decade, recently there has been growing recognition of CCI’s significance to non-state actors. CCI is central to proactively mitigating cyber risk and exploiting opportunities. With the growing recognition of CCI’s significance comes an appreciation of its complexity. CCI is all about outthinking and outwitting adversaries. This article advances a conceptual matrix that can serve both as a high-level ‘pocket guide’ for outsmarting adversaries and as an aid to academic research.

Privacy in Open Source Intelligence and Big Data Analytics: Case ‘MARISA’ for Maritime Surveillance


This case study analyses Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) and Big Data Analytics (BDA) with an emphasis on cyber reconnaissance and the associated privacy concerns. The main focus is privacy considerations in OSINT and BDA. The study also analyses how maritime surveillance authorities can act so that their reconnaissance efforts would gain/maintain public approval. The empirical case explores privacy challenges in the Maritime Integrated Surveillance Awareness (MARISA) project. The overall goal is to accelerate the discussion on the problem of privacy breaches that may lead to restrictions of individual liberty and erosion of the foundations of trust in society.

A Basic Set of Mental Models for Understanding and Dealing with the CyberSecurity Challenges of Today


For most people, cybersecurity is a difficult notion to grasp. Traditionally, cybersecurity has been considered a technical challenge, and still many specialists understand it as information security, with the notions of confidentiality, integrity, and availability as its foundation. Although many have searched for different and broader perspectives, the complexity and ambiguity of the notion still thwarts a common understanding. While the author was developing and executing a MSc cybersecurity program for professionals with a wide variety of backgrounds and widely differing views on cybersecurity, the lack of a common understanding of cybersecurity was clearly evident. Based on these observations, the author began seeking and defining a new, transdisciplinary conceptualization of cybersecurity that can be widely agreed upon. It resulted in the publication of three scientific papers. This paper is an amalgam of the contents of the three supplemented with some extensions. It turned out that the previously introduced description of two key notions, cyberspace and cybersecurity, is still an adequate starting point. Described here is a set of additional mental models elaborating on these key notions and providing more detail on their meanings.

Cyber Sanctions: Weaponising the Embargo of Flagged Data in a Fragmented Internet


This paper introduces the concept of cyber sanctions, which can be defined as the actual or threatened restriction of digital transactions to affect a behavioural change by the target through the introduction of psychological pressure against its political leaders and populace. While the concept of ‘internet sovereignty’ deals with the country’s choice to control foreign data from coming in or ‘sovereign’ data from going out (self-imposed digital isolation), cyber sanctions deal with senders (powerul states or entities imposing the sanctions) restricting certain ‘flagged’ data from traveling to or from the target (forced digital isolation).

Investigation and Surveillance on the Darknet – A Secure Architecture to Reconcile Legal Aspects with Technology


Regarding efficient forensics and police activities, legalities often limit the ability to respond with technical action. Things that are technically feasible may be legally forbidden and must comply with a rigorous legal framework. This paper discusses a project of highly secure architecture that enables anyone to take part in the surveillance of the Darknet while complying with all the known legal constraints.

Cybersecurity and Information Warfare Research in South Africa: Challenges and Proposed Solutions


Cybersecurity is often incorrectly assumed to be a purely technical field; however, there are numerous multidisciplinary aspects, such as, for example, human factors, legal, and governance issues. The broad scope, combined with other historical or bureaucratic factors, can provide challenges to researchers and students where appropriate methodologies do not necessarily conform to traditional disciplinary norms; prejudice against research approaches can occur as a result of ‘old school thought’. This paper aims to investigate the South African national and institutional perspectives for higher education and research, identify challenges, and propose solutions to facilitate multidisciplinary research into cybersecurity and Information Warfare (IW) in South Africa.

Assessing Cyber Security Threats and Risks in the Public Sector of Greece


Organisations having to cope with new threats and risks are increasing their focus and looking at novel ways to improve their cyber security assurance. As critical national infrastructures are becoming more vulnerable to cyberattacks, their protection becomes a significant issue for EU member states. The National Cyber Security Authority of Greece (NCSA) takes all necessary steps towards a secure Greek cyberspace.

Strategic Culture and Cyber Warfare:A Methodology for Comparative Analysis


A nation state’s strategic culture inluences policy and behaviour in cyberspace. An approach to comparative research is provided herein to enhance the field and provide practical outcomes for policy formation and establishment of norms. This paper proposes a mixed-methods framework, combining policy analysis with key informant interviews and a survey.

Journal of Information Warfare

The definitive publication for the best and latest research and analysis on information warfare, information operations, and cyber crime. Available in traditional hard copy or online.

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The definitive publication for the best and latest research and analysis on information warfare, information operations, and cyber crime. Available in traditional hard copy or online.


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