This episode features returning guest Sam Woolley, whose new book 'The Reality Game,' examines the new frontiers of 'fake news' and the idea that the next wave of technology will 'break the truth'. We discuss the state of the art in propaganda bots, delve further into the Russian strategy of producing 'controlled instability' through ongoing, widespread informational attacks such as political bots, and talk about the rise of institutional distrust, which may well prove disastrous in the context of the current pandemic.

I hope you are doing okay during this tough period. During these uncertain times I'd love to connect with listeners more than ever. For that reason I'm temporarily opening the Patreon discord to anyone who wants to join -- just email me at [email protected] and I'll send you an invite. At times like this we all benefit from exchanging information and ideas about what we should be doing and how to survive whatever comes next.


In this episode, we meet Andy Greenberg, senior writer at Wired Magazine and author of Sandworm, A New Era of Cyberwar and the Hunt for the Kremlin’s Most Dangerous Hacker. We learned how Russia is developing a secret hacking programme with the ability to take out national infrastructure across the world -- and how, under a new paradigm of 'total war', essential elements of our lived environment are increasingly vulnerable to digital attack -- from banking to electricity to transport systems and beyond. Find out why Russia may now be trying to export the 'controlled instability' it has produced in Ukraine to the West, and how this could provide the country with an unprecedented 'asymmetric' military upper hand.


It seems everyone's getting in on the "fake news" game today, from far-right parties in Germany to critics of Catalan separatism -- but none more concertedly than the Russian state itself. In this episode we meet Ben Nimmo, Fellow at the Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab, to talk us through the latest patterns and trends in online disinformation and hybrid warfare. 'People who really want to cause trouble can make up just about anything,' explains Ben, 'and the fakes are getting more and more complex. It's really quite alarming.' After cluing us in on the state of information warfare today, we discuss evidence that the Russians are deploying a fully-funded 'Troll Factory' across dominant social networks whose intent is to distort reality and sway the political conversation in favour of its masters. We dig deep into the present history of the 'Battle Of The Bots', looking specifically at the activities of the fake Twitter account @TEN_GOP, whose misinformation has reached all the way to the highest tier of American government. Can we control or counter these rogue informational entities? What's the best way to do so? Do we need 'Asimov Laws' for a new generation of purely online, but completely real, information entities?

Showrunner & Host Jamie King | Editor Riley Byrne Original Music David Triana | Web Production Eric Barch


Presented by TorrentFreak

Sponsored by Private Internet Access & Premiumize

Executive Producers: Mark Zapalac, Eric Barch, Nelson Larios, George Alvarez.

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