CyberWarfare / ExoWarfare

ExoWarfare Talks at USSOCOM / SOFWERX on 04 DEC 2018

Radical Speaker Series:

Countering Weaponized Information

4 December 2018

Request to Attend Deadline: 23 November 


On 4 December, SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM/J5 Donovan Group, will host a Radical Speaker Series covering weaponized information. Mass influence operations, deep fakes, and social media metrics have been used by state and non-state actors in attempts to influence everything from public sentiment on policy issues to election results. The type and extent of influence operations has laid bare policy and technology gaps. This represents an emerging new threat vector for global competition short of armed conflict.



Part I: Dr. David Perlman

Dr. David M. Perlman studied applied physics at Caltech and Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington, worked in tech in Seattle during the dot-com boom, and then pursued his interest in cognitive science through a doctorate at University of Wisconsin-Madison with renowned affective neuroscientist Richard J. Davidson. He began with a focus on mechanisms by which meditation affects psychological well-being, which took him to India to present to His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Dr. Perlman’s thesis project combined techniques of behavioral economics and psychophysiology to quantitatively study the relationship of narrative and social identity with valuation and decision. His ultimate goal is to implement an “early warning system” to neutralize the dangerous new threat of hostile social media influence as a national security issue.

Dr. Perlman will be presenting on “An Introduction to Cyber-enabled Information Operations”

We are all in an active global hybrid conflict. The kinetic battlefield is well-known; the “cyber” battlefield is new, and the conflict mode of cyber-enabled information operations (CyIO) is so new that many are only distantly aware of its existence, few understand the critical differences of CyIO from cyberwarfare, and fewer still know how to recognize and describe, let alone counter, CyIO operations. The battlefield of CyIO is “social media,” the internet layer of human-scale information that is emotionally and socially compelling, and as a result, CyIO cannot be understood or even discussed without a new synthesis of psychology, sociology, political economics and social choice theory, data science, and enterprise-level systems engineering. Dr. Perlman will draw upon these fields to introduce an overview of CyIO, how it relates to other domains such as cybersecurity, propaganda, narrative and information warfare.

Part II: Dr. Matthew Sorell

Dr. Matthew Sorell is a senior lecturer in Telecommunications and Multimedia Engineering at the University of Adelaide and has recently been appointed Adjunct Professor in Digital Forensics at the Tallinn University of Technology (Tal Tech), Estonia. He is also a consultant to Australian law enforcement and an academic member of the INTERPOL Digital Forensics Experts Group. Dr. Sorell specializes in the analysis of criminal evidence derived from devices such as mobile phones and wearable devices, and complex audiovisual content. Dr. Sorell received a high commendation from the U.K. National Police Chiefs Council earlier this year for the development of emerging sources of digital investigation in the International Digital Investigation Awards.

Dr. Sorell will be presenting on “DEEPFAKE: Provenance Countermeasures”

In response to the emerging and rapidly developing DEEPFAKE video techniques, a number of countermeasures have been proposed. These include the insertion of signatures (such as steganographic watermarking) and the analysis of video and audio content anomalies, for example by machine learning. This presentation will introduce source camera provenance techniques for still and video cameras and propose how these techniques may be applied to both the detection of video manipulation and the tracing of common supply chains.

Part III: Dr. Irene Amerini

Dr. Irene Amerini is a senior postdoctoral researcher at Image Forensics and Security Lab, Media Integration and Communication Center, University of Florence, in Italy. In 2018 she obtained a Visiting Research Fellowship at the School of Computing and Mathematics at Charles Sturt University offered by the Australian Government – Department of Education and Training through the Endeavour Scholarship & Fellowship program. Dr. Amerini received a Ph.D. in computer engineering, multimedia and telecommunication from the University of Florence in 2011. Her research interests are focused on multimedia forensics, particularly in source identification, image and video forgery detection and localization.

Dr. Amerini will be presenting on “Strategies for Countering Fake Information: New Trends in Multimedia Authenticity Verification and Source Identification”

In this talk forensic methodologies and tools employed so far to analyze digital evidences to ensure media authenticity will be outlined with special attention to the most promising solutions relying on Convolutional Neural Networks; an in-depth focus will be dedicated to realistic scenarios, such as the spreading of multimedia data over social networks. Finally, an overview of the recent trends and evolution will be provided giving an insight on new security issues related to deepfakes and computer generated images with GAN.

Part IV: Sara-Jayne Terp

Sara-Jayne Terp is a data scientist at AppNexus (online advertising exchange), sometimes a professor at Columbia University, and always causing trouble somewhere. Terp is a self-proclaimed “data nerd”, who specializes in complex business and social problems. Her current interests are focused in misinformation mechanisms and counters with current work including large-scale auction systems. Using her background in applied AI, military information systems, autonomous vehicle system design, data strategy, crowdsourcing, crisis data and transport data systems are just a number of experiences that Terp has.


Tentative Agenda

8:00 AM – 8:30 AM: Check-In

8:30 AM – 8:45 AM: SOFWERX Welcome Remarks

8:45 AM – 9:00 AM: J5 Remarks

9:00 AM – 9:45 AM: “An Introduction to Cyber-enabled Information Operations” – Dr. David Perlman

9:45 AM – 10:30 AM: “DEEPFAKE: Provenance Countermeasures” – Dr. Matthew Sorrell

10:30 AM – 10:45 AM: Break

10:45 AM – 11:30 PM: “Strategies for Countering Fake Information: New Trends in Multimedia Authenticity Verification and Source Identification” – Dr. Irene Amerini

11:30 AM – 12:15 PM: Sara-Jayne Terp

12:15 PM – 1:00 PM: Lunch (Available for Purchase from Food Trucks)

1:00 PM – 3:00 PM: Panel Discussion


How to Participate

Click Here to Request to Attend In Person at SOFWERX: Click Here to Request to Attend

Click Here to Request to Attend Virtually: Click Here to Request to Attend



For event related questions, please contact Kinsey Crim,






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