The NCDL ‘What if..?’ Blog

Blogging and stimulating debate about the unprecedented can be a tricky thing to do. For many people the issue might just be ‘what is all the fuss about?’

For others, the issues being discussed might seem so contrasting to their experience of the present that only 10 years of hindsight will convince them that we were onto something.

So, following the adage ‘if you’re not on the edge, then you’re taking up too much space’, and being prepared to admit to being wrong if the situation calls for it, we welcome you to our small corner of controversy. Here we will embrace a stance more of science fiction than science fact. We’re going to try and re-orientate the debates in Cyber Deception. To do this we’ll step out in front of the mainstream debates and try to start new ones.

How should you read our blogs?

Let’s think about evidence-based practice and the need to underpin professional activity with robust theory. Specifically, let’s think about these issues in an adversarial context. Here you have belligerent attackers and defenders; zero-sum outcomes; and a time-pressured need to act. Simplistically, you can either win or lose (for a defender not looking for a fight, let’s argue a draw is a loss).

In that fight, you can be right about how the world works or you can be wrong. When fighting using deception, errors in sensemaking is where the real power lies. Owning a robust and useful interpretation of the world and denying it to our adversaries is how we beat them.

How might we manage an evidenced-based approach to creating an error in the way that our adversaries see the world whilst operating in a domain that is unprecedented in human history?  Well, our approach is this. We’re going to wildly speculate about what might be done and get you the readers to help us sort out the important issues from the bizarre ramblings. What follows are a number of proto-blogs. Those that get the most likes and interest will be developed further to strengthen the arguments offered and evidence that might support (or deny) their utility. If we get some groundswell of interest in specific areas we can bring these ideas out in our symposium and perhaps commission some research we can publish in that area.

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