Our picksU.S. Hospital Facing “Imminent” Cyber-Attacks | Criminology to Counter Influence Operations | Election Violence, and more

Published 30 October 2020

·  No Need to Federalize State’s National Guards, Leaders Say

·  Preventing and Countering Election-Motivated Violence Without Causing Panic

·  Con Man and Fake Spy Who Once Worked for DEA, DHS Gets Seven Years in Prison

·  Using Criminology to Counter Influence Operations: Disrupt, Displace, and Deter

·  Cyber-Enabled Foreign Interference in Elections on the Rise

·  Research Project Finds Unexpected Resistance to Extremism in Canadian Prisons

·  U.S. Hospital Systems Facing “Imminent” Threat of Cyber-Attacks, FBI Warns

·  Health Sector Mobilizes Defenses Following Ryuk Ransomware Warning

·  The AI Company Helping the Pentagon Assess Disinfo Campaigns

No Need to Federalize State’s National Guards, Leaders Say (Katie Bo Williams, Defense One)
National Guard leaders for four states, including one key battleground state, on Wednesday argued fiercely against putting the Guard under federal control to deal with any potential unrest related to the presidential election next week.
“I cannot think of any scenario where we would recommend or ask for being federalized,” Tennessee’s adjunct general told reporters.

Preventing and Countering Election-Motivated Violence Without Causing Panic (Ryan B. Greer, Lawfare)
At first glance, the terrorist threat that recently captivated the nation—athwarted attempt by a militia cell to kidnap Governors Gretchen Whitmer and Ralph Northam—may appear to be an anomaly—a one-off plot hatched by a fringe group influenced by the “boogaloo” movement, but with fewer followers. Or it could be part of a pattern of growing extremist activity in the run up to the 2020 presidential elections. Our efforts at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) currently focus on mitigating the potential for Election Day violence.
While there is no way to predict what will actually take place over the next few weeks leading up to and directly after the election, the ADL’s monitoring of extremist groups suggests that election-motivated violence could yield more domestic terrorism threats, which if fully realized, could pose a threat to ensuring free and fair elections.

Con Man and Fake Spy Who Once Worked for DEA, DHS Gets Seven Years in Prison (Ken Dilanian, NBC News)
“Courtney — along with his five aliases — will now spend the next seven years in federal prison,” said the U.S. attorney.

Using Criminology to Counter Influence Operations: Disrupt, Displace, and Deter (Martin Innes, Carnegie Endowment)
Lessons learned from other disciplines show that sometimes playing the long game is the best approach.

Cyber-Enabled Foreign Interference in Elections on the Rise (Sarah O’Connor, The Strategist)
Foreign governments’ efforts to interfere in the elections and referendums of other countries, and more broadly to undermine other political systems, are an enduring practice of statecraft. Over the past decade, the scale and methods through which such interference occurs has changed, with state actors exploiting the digitization of election systems, election administration and election campaigns to influence voters and voter turnout, manipulate the information environment and weaken public trust in democratic processes.

Research Project Finds Unexpected Resistance to Extremism in Canadian Prisons (Khadra Ahmed, The Gateway)
The findings of the project challenge the common perception that prisoners are “bad people.”

U.S. Hospital Systems Facing “Imminent” Threat of Cyber-Attacks, FBI Warns (Guardian)
An alert said malicious groups are targeting the healthcare sector with attacks designed to lock up information systems and steal data

Health Sector Mobilizes Defenses Following Ryuk Ransomware Warning (Sean Lyngaas, Cyberscoop)
A day after U.S. federal agencies warned of an “imminent” ransomware threat to hospitals, it’s an all-hands-on deck mentality for a health sector already strained by the coronavirus pandemic.
Private threat briefings are being held for hospital executives, federal officials are appealing for more data on the cybercriminals and hospitals are hardening their computer networks.

The AI Company Helping the Pentagon Assess Disinfo Campaigns (Will Knight, Wired)
Primer can quickly sort through hundreds of sources to identify, say, Russian interference in Azerbaijan. It sells its tech to Walmart too.

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The US military is targeting foreign actors to defend the presidential election Israel’s underground Sensory Concrete Barrier exposes tunnel for first time