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29 Sec. & Hum. Rts. 1 (2018)

handle is hein.journals/helsnk29 and id is 1 raw text is: 

   ..          SECURITY AND HUMAN RIGHTS 29(2018)12            SECURITY AND
 BRILL                                                         HUMAN RIGHTS
NIJHOFF                                                        brill.com/shrs


Introduction


Disinformation is a complex phenomenon. In this issue of Security and Human
Rights we focus on specific aspects of international manipulation of informa-
tion. We zoom in on the relevance of disinformation on international security
generally, on the potential disruptive effect of disinformation on elections and
election observation, on how disinformation impacts on disputes on national
history and remembrance (the so-called 'memory wars') in Poland in particu-
lar, and on the relevance of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in counter-strategies
against information manipulation.
   We define disinformation as the deliberate spread of false or unbalanced
information by foreign states or non-state actors with the objective to confuse
and mislead, to sow disagreement and discord among parts of the population
in other countries. All major countries are involved in information manipula-
tion, but recently no state attracted as much attention as Russia did, especially
with regard to its intervention in foreign elections. The most common form
of disinformation in elections is the spread of 'fake news, with the aim to dis-
credit opponents or to influence the voting process, and to use false election
monitoring and observation results. In this issue Max Bader presents an over-
view of these activities in democratic and non-democratic environments and
he discusses measures to reduce their scope and impact.
   There is good reason to focus on Russia's international information manipu-
lation, as we do in our contributions to this special issue, but there is equal
reason to emphasize that Russia is far from the only country that engages in
these activities. A recent Oxford University inventory of organized information
manipulation identified at least 28 countries that engage in these activities.
   Disinformation is an age-old aspect of foreign policy and warfare. But it is
different now, and it is technology, more than intent or content, that makes
disinformation today rather unlike earlier forms of international informa-
tion manipulation. Technology makes 21st century disinformation possible,
and technology is key to contain and counter it. In her contribution Katarina
Kertysova explores the challenges and opportunities presented by Al in the
context of information operations. She examines the ways in which Al can be
used to counter disinformation online, discusses its limitations and the threats
associated with Al techniques. Finally, she reviews possible solutions that


(D ANDRE W.M. GERRITS, 2019  1 DOI:10.1163/18750230-02901012
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the prevailing CC-BY-NC license at the time
of publication

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