This report proposes a capability assessment framework for countering disinformation, information influence, and foreign interference. At present, much emphasis is placed on the capability to counter disinformation and other associated phenomena. However, few have attempted to systematically define what those countermeasures are, and how they could be placed within a single, coherent capability assessment framework.
This lack is not least because countries do not, and should not, approach these challenges in the same way. Geography, history, political systems, areas of expertise, and relative power explain to some extent why countries use different terminologies, organisational structures, and policies for dealing with foreign interference. Furthermore, friendly actors at times share capabilities–such as tech platforms, researchers, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and private-sector intelligence companies.
There is no perfect template for assessing capabilities, but rather only organisations and systems designed to cope with different threats based on their mandates, interests, and available resources.
Since there is no one-size-fits-all solution to this problem, this report provides a flexible approach to capability assessment based on simple principles that can be applied by different types of actors. In support of this, and drawing upon previous research in this subject area, four capability assessment tools are established as tools to solve different assessment problems