DerbyCon Talk: Bots, Trolls, and Warriors: The Modern Adversary Playbook

Watch Andrea Little Limbago's 2017 DerbyCon talk on how adversaries are integrating bots, trolls, and warriors.

Adversaries increasingly integrate ‘traditional’ computer attack vectors with advances in automation and the power of disinformation to reach a wider range of targets and achieve a wider range of objectives. Increasingly, these bots, trolls and warriors are employed simultaneously to achieve strategic impact and surprise. Bots reflect the implementation of automation and machine learning, and manifest in everything from widespread DDoS to malvertising to social bots. Trolls represent groups or individuals who leverage online forums to influence opinions, perspectives, and achieve specific objectives. Finally, cyber warriors are increasingly brazen and leverage both tried and true techniques as well as highly customized attacks. To counter this playbook, defenders must similarly pursue socio-technical innovations. The stakes are high, as it has far-reaching impact on stability, democracy, security and privacy for the foreseeable future. 

Andrea Little Limbago is the Chief Social Scientist at Endgame, where she researches and writes on geopolitics and cybersecurity, data science, and directs the company’s technical content. Her writing has been featured in Politico, VentureBeat, the Hill and Christian Science Monitor, and she has presented at a range of security conferences (e.g., Enigma and O’Reilly), government conferences (e.g. SOCOM’s Global Synchronization), and in academia (e.g. International Studies Association Annual Conference). She previously worked in academia and at the Department of Defense. Andrea holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she taught international relations and foreign policy courses, and a Bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College.