Craig discusses the disinformation campaigns by Russia and China and how they can interfere with our electoral process. 

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Automated Machine-Generated Transcript:

[00:00:00] Stanford has a new report out. Yes, indeed. What is happening in China and Russia when it comes to the US election?

Hi everybody. Craig Peterson here. Thanks for joining me today. You know, if you missed any part of today’s show, you can find it on your favorite podcast app. You can also find it at @craigpeterson.com. And if you want to see them all. Craigpeterson.com/podcast, but I am out there and I’d love to get a review from you.

If you wouldn’t mind us, it’ll take you no more than about two minutes. Hopefully, I’ve earned a five-star review from you. So go ahead into your podcast app and do that right now. If you wouldn’t mind, give me a five-star review, leave a little comment about what you like best about the show. If I haven’t earned a five-star review from you, I apologize.

[00:01:00] I would love for you to send me a note. Just email me M E. at Craig peterson.com and I’ll make sure that I try and do a little better next time.

Alright, so let’s get into this. This is dark reading again, and it is fascinating to look at black hat and they’d cover the whole black hat conference pretty thoroughly.

 In case you don’t know what that is. Black hat is a conference every year. In fact, there’s a couple of them usually out in Las Vegas and they have briefings. There are all kinds of cool little seminars, if you will, that you can attend and they discuss ways to hack. Now it’s not necessarily all of the bad guys, this isn’t the dark web getting together and saying, okay, we’re going to hack people and this is how we’re going to hack them.

[00:02:00] And Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah, right? What this is, is the security professionals getting together and talking about what they found and talking about what needs to change. This is an absolutely fascinating conference. I’ve never actually gone out there before. Could never really afford it, to go out all of the time, and then the money that’s involved, but they do some absolutely amazing things.

One of the things that were discussed was what is happening with our political, at least enemies out there. More specifically, we’re talking about Russia and China. Russia has what are known now internationally as best in class efforts where they try and create social divides in Western democracies.

[00:03:00] And the idea here is much like what we’ve seen going on, right? Rather than everybody pulling together and we’re all Americans and let’s make everything better. Let’s make sure everyone has an equal opportunity. There are a lot of people out there that are trying to divide us into different segments based on race or based on age or where we live in the country, which is really, really sad.

That’s what Russia’s trying to do. A nation divided can never stand. And they haven’t just been going after the United States. They’ve been going after other Western countries and we’ve got China who has been attacking, of course, dissidents within their country. They are concerned too about what people are saying internationally and all of this information and disinformation operations are becoming a much bigger threat, according to a Stanford researcher.

The Russian government doesn’t spend anywhere near as much as China does on these overt state-sponsored media properties. Now that makes sense because China, of course, is a socialist country and they have to control what people think and what people say in order to retain power, because of free people would never put up socialism, right?

[00:04:00] Any form of it whether its communism or fascism or anything in between all of those. So they have to be very careful about stopping that. Russia has turned into an oligarchy, basically where the vast amount of the fortune in Russia.

I saw a number this week. It was over 80% is held by a small fraction. Like I think it was 50 people in Russia. So basically a very small handful of people control pretty much all of the wealth in Russia, which is a huge problem too. They are controlling the media to varying degrees, but it’s nothing like a communist country would, it’s nothing like the way Russia was back when they were a socialist country, when it was the, uh, the Soviet Union way back when, right.

[00:05:00] Hard to remember that a lot of kids nowadays have no idea. You know, I, I was talking with my kids about this year, the other day too.  I was saying, I will never visit Germany. I have no desire to do it. Because I know, well I knew, cause they’ve passed now, I knew people who fought against the socialists in Germany.

I knew people who were imprisoned by them. I knew people whose families, I mean, personally I know people whose families were killed in the gas chambers by the socialists in Germany. I don’t have any desire to go there. I just don’t, right. I don’t know any Russian citizens that were there either, but one of my daughters studied Russian and went and lived in St. Petersburg for about six months studying Russian. The lady she was living with an old lady said, one morning we woke up and we were all socialists now. That’s what happens, right. It just creeps in creeps and creeps in until. All of a sudden, overnight, it happens as though it’s kind of an instant thing.

[00:06:00] So China is trying to do some of that, as well as Russia because they want to divide us so that the country will collapse. They’re getting increasingly sophisticated. We know about ads that were purchased last time around in 2016 by Russia. Many of them were just run terribly, but Russia has pulled up their socks on that.

The major advertising venues are no longer accepting ads that are clearly from these varying countries. Okay.

These campaigns from China and Russia have a number of goals and here’s what they are: they want to distract the attention from their own actions, Russia in China, right. They want to persuade people to a certain point of view like socialism is good.  Relations with China are important. Relations with Russia are important. You should be selling us your uranium, right? All that sort of stuff. Dividing citizens into opposing groups, which we’re doing to ourselves, as well as they’re trying to do. And then. The last goal is to entrenching them into hardline opinions. Aren’t they being successful? Right.

[00:07:00] Have you ever seen. In our world lifetimes, the nation this divided. So many opinions that are so misinformed. You know I haven’t, but I, we have been in situations like this before a number of times, frankly. So Russia right now, best in class for information operations. They have an absolute commitment to full-spectrum propaganda and they remember how to do it from the Soviet Union days.

[00:08:00] They also get into far more sophisticated actors. Activities. They are also manipulating the media as is China. Then ultimately moving towards network infiltration as well. So we’ve got a lot of concerns leading up to this 2020 us presidential election.

 Last week I talked about how Breitbart hadn’t been completely turned off by Google. We’re a Google will not refer anyone searching about Joe Biden to Breitbart anymore. They have just completely silenced them. It’s absolutely amazing to me. I can’t believe this is happening here in the United States, but these Russian and Chinese disinflation campaigns are huge.

[00:09:00] Now, this is interesting too, because apparently the Russian disinformation campaign leading up to the 2016 election influenced not just the United States, but obviously people from all over the world. We’ve got China cracking down now on information about the protest in Hong Kong. We’ve got Saudi Arabia attempting to control the narrative, following the assassination of author and writer Jamal Khashoggi. Not that he was a great guy, okay. But that assassination was just unreal. What happened there?

What are we going to do? And we’ve got our president concerned about this to know mail-in ballot thing where some States are planning on mailing ballots to every name, every address that they’ve ever seen at any house. These databases are completely out of date and no one has to show ID. No one has to prove that they are registered voters.

[00:10:00] This is going to be one heck of a year. Okay. Absolutely amazing.

The Russians have also got some algorithms they’ve programmed to figure out what’s working, how to disseminate it. Oh, man.

 Just this last week here, Google announced that YouTube had shuttered almost 2,600 YouTube channels as part of its efforts into coordinated information operations by China. Isn’t that amazing?

There is so much misinformation going on. We are digging our own grave. I hate to say that.

We have been very busy in the studio putting together stuff. I think this is going to be really good, informative for you guys and I don’t want you to miss a thing. I want you to be able to get all of the pieces of training that we’re doing, the videos, the live training, the webinars.

[00:11:00] I really need you guys to understand this stuff so you can protect yourself.  I can explain it to you. You don’t need to be afraid of it, right?  I know many people think that they just can’t do it. They can’t do it well with it. They have many other important things in life, but it is not going to take much time at all.

To learn how to deal with this, deal with this correctly, not get ripped off. You know, you do a search on Google and there are millions of results, and you have no idea what to use. You have, of course, all of these different systems, software, hardware that don’t work together that make your life more difficult.

I am going to try and make this easy for you, which free tools to use. What can you do by yourself? Then more advanced stuff as you need it, as well. Okay. So make sure you sign up, go to Craig peterson.com/subscribe, Craigpeterson.com/subscribe.

[00:12:00] This stuff is going to be starting up this fall. I did a lot of training in February, March, April of this year.

And then if you got my email, you know why. I’ve been kind of off the chart here for the last couple of months. But c’est la vie pourvu que ça dure. Right? So have a great week.

Make sure you follow some of the stuff that I’m doing. I’m going to be posting all over the place. I think you’ll see me kinda everywhere and join me on Wednesday morning with Mr. Matt Gagnon. As we get together at seven 30, take care.

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