The Alt-Right and Antifa Are Waging a New Kind of Internet Warfare

by Ezra Buckley on September 3, 2017

(Ed. note: Ignore the hysterical handwaving in this article and rather take note of the methods described. )

Intelligence and surveillance powers that once belonged only to militaries and state spooks are now available to anyone with a high-speed internet connection.

Live long enough and you may hear future historians recall the war between 4chan and an art collective called LaBeouf, Rönkkö & Turner.

They’ll tell the story of how anonymous, interconnected imageboard users gathered clues from public video footage, like passing aircraft and the position of stars, to geolocate the roving, anti-Trump art project He Will Not Divide Us, put on by actor Shia LaBeouf and his collaborators. Records will show that the people on the group’s trail—pro-Trump activists, impish saboteurs, and budding neo-Nazis—didn’t need high-end spy gear. Instead, they found their mark by collecting and processing public information through decentralized and supposedly leaderless networks. It might one day look, in retrospect, like a form of social automation: continuously updating intelligence assessments converted into real-world effect by volunteer foot “soldiers” acting without orders.

Or maybe the saga will be remembered as a trial run of sorts, when tactics later used in domestic guerilla warfare first appeared as sinister pranks. Whatever happens next, the genie is out of the bottle, and intelligence and surveillance capabilities that once belonged only to militaries and state spooks are now available to anyone with a high-speed internet connection. READ MORE

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