Only Human Hands Can Craft Effective Information Offensives

By Doug Wise

Douglas H. Wise served as Deputy Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency from August 2014 until August 2016. Following 20 years of active duty in the Army where he served as an infantry and special operations officer, he spent the remainder of his career at CIA.

Much of the discussion surrounding Russian cyber-enabled information operations against Western societies focuses on technology, such as bots amplifying messages on social media and the hacking of institutions of power to then leak emails with potentially salacious material. But in order to meet the level of success that Russian intelligence has in their information campaigns, they must first do the groundwork – determining their target audience and characterizing their pressure points through cyber espionage. The Cipher Brief’s Levi Maxey spoke with Doug Wise, the former Deputy Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, about how governments, both democratic and autocratic, might go about engaging in cyber-enabled information warfare.

The Cipher Brief: How do democracies and autocratic regimes view cyberspace differently, or is it generally the same?

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