Surveil to Manipulate in the Name of National Security: State Interference with Citizen Mental Sphere Via the Use of Information and Information Technologies

31 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2021

See all articles by Francesca Pichierri

Francesca Pichierri

FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz Institute for Information Infrastructure

Date Written: July 16, 2021

Abstract

After the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, concerns regarding manipulation as a purpose of surveillance have finally gained respectability and wide appeal. Yet what is lacking in the emerging literature concerning surveillance to manipulate are discussions regarding security programs aiming at manipulating targets. This paper bridges this gap. The analysis digs into Western democracies “psychological operations” doctrine. It provides examples of state manipulative practices conducted by intelligence agencies in the name of national security and highlights the set of tools used, the way they operate, the broad range of targets, the new possibilities nowadays offered by the online world to manipulate citizens and the harms associated to manipulation. Findings are then analyzed under the European Union framework for the protection of fundamental rights. It emerges that state manipulation attacks a dimension, the mental one, poorly protected by law and action is needed to effectively protect individuals from state surveillance-to-manipulate.

Keywords: Surveillance, Security, Manipulation, Psychological operations, Fundamental rights

Suggested Citation

Pichierri, Francesca, Surveil to Manipulate in the Name of National Security: State Interference with Citizen Mental Sphere Via the Use of Information and Information Technologies (July 16, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3888396 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3888396

Francesca Pichierri (Contact Author)

FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz Institute for Information Infrastructure ( email )

Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1
Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, 76344
Germany

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