Table of Content
While reflecting the increased complexity and lethality of the modern
battlefield, Army doctrine recognizes that advanced weapons and technologies
are no better than the skill with which leaders and soldiers employ
them against the enemy.
This chapter outlines the nature of information and the fundamentals
of IO by stating what they are, what they apply to, and how they relate
to various activities of IO. The chapter discusses the components of
IO--operations, relevant information and intelligence (RII),
and information systems (INFOSYS). It concludes with a
discussion of the six critical activities essential to a sound IO program:
acquiring, using, protecting, exploiting, denying, and managing
information and INFOSYS.
Information is defined as--
Data collected from the environment and processed into a usable
A given piece of data is largely meaningless by itself. Only when data
is processed, that is, placed into a situational context, does it gain
meaning and become, by definition, information. Knowledge is derived from
information. Knowledge is information that has been tested and accepted
- Through cognition--the mental process that receives or develops unverified
- Through assessment or testing to prove the information.
- By acceptance of the information as factual.
Commanders and their planners must always be sensitive to the difference
between beliefs and knowledge. Untested beliefs, even when commonly held,
differ from facts and are, in essence, opinions that can later
prove to be wrong. Decisions based upon beliefs instead of facts are always
Understanding is achieved by using judgment to give knowledge relevance
within a specific situational context. Ideally, understanding a situation
supports a commander in battlefield visualization and creates the conditions
from which plans can be formed and effective actions taken. See Figure
Figure 2-1. The Cognitive Hierarchy
While it is certainly desirable to achieve full understanding of a situation
before making decisions, commanders must be fully prepared to make decisions
in an operational environment of ambiguity, characterized by imperfect
information and incomplete understanding. Command decision-making will
remain an art, not a science, even in the Information Age. A goal of IO
is to narrow the gap between the art and science of command decision making.
The National Military Strategy recognizes that information warfare
(IW) is one of many capabilities within the US military elements of national
power. IW can support the overall US Government strategic engagement policy
during peacetime, crisis, conflict, and postconflict. The ability of the
US Government to influence the perceptions and decision making of others
greatly impacts the effectiveness of deterrence, power projection, and
other strategic concepts.
This paragraph introduces and defines information warfare and
explains its relationship with the Army's interpretation--information
operations. In times of crisis, information can deter adversaries
from initiating actions detrimental to interests of the US Government
or its allies or detrimental to the conduct of friendly military operations.
If carefully conceived, coordinated, and executed, IW--
- Contributes to defusing crises.
- Reduces the period of confrontation and enhances the impact of informational,
diplomatic, economic, and military efforts.
- Forestalls or eliminates the need to employ combat forces.
Information warfare is the term adopted by the Department of Defense
(DOD) and the joint staff to recognize a range of actions taken during
conflict to achieve information superiority over an adversary. It is specifically
defined in CJCSI 3210.01 as--
Actions taken to achieve information superiority by affecting adversary
information, information-based processes, information systems, and computer-based
networks while defending one's own information, information-based processes,
information systems and computer-based networks.
The objective of IW is to attain a significant information advantage
that enables the total force to quickly dominate and control the adversary.
The strategic goal of IW is to seize and maintain a decisive advantage
by attacking an adversary's NII through exploitation, denial, and influence,
while protecting friendly INFOSYS. IW offers either side the chance to
strike at a distance with relative safety.
The Army, recognizing that IW as currently defined by DOD is more narrowly
focused on the impact of information during actual conflict, has chosen
to take a somewhat broader approach to the impact of information on ground
operations and adopted the term information operations. The Army has adopted
this broader approach to recognize that information issues permeate the
full range of military operations (beyond just the traditional context
of warfare) from peace through global war. IO implement the IW policy
for the land component commander.
Information operations integrate all aspects of information to
support and enhance the elements of combat power, with the goal of dominating
the battlespace at the right time, at the right place, and with the right
weapons or resources. IO are defined as--
Continuous military operations within the MIE that enable, enhance,
and protect the friendly force's ability to collect, process, and act
on information to achieve an advantage across the full range of military
operations; IO include interacting with the GIE and exploiting or denying
an adversary's information and decision capabilities.
Units conduct IO across the full range of military operations, from operations
in garrison, through deployment, to combat operations, and continuing
through redeployment upon mission completion.
Activities to support IO include acquiring, using, protecting, managing,
exploiting, and denying information and INFOSYS. These activities
take place within three interrelated components of IO: operations,
RII, and INFOSYS. These components operate within a battlespace
established by the MIE. (See Figure 2-2.)
Army organizations conduct these IO activities as part of a dynamic, iterative
process to support each component in an integrated full-dimensional operation.
Figure 2-2. Information Operations
C2W, CA, and PA are the three operations the Army currently uses to gain
and maintain information dominance and effective C2.
C2W is the warfighting application of IW in military operations. The
aim of C2W is to influence, deny information to, degrade, or destroy adversary
C2 capabilities while protecting C2 capabilities against such actions.
C2W is composed of two major branches:
- Command and control-attack (C2-attack).
- Command and control-protect (C2-protect).
C2W planning is conducted throughout the military operational continuum,
from peacetime through termination of hostilities. In the past, the primary
warfighting objective was to concentrate physical and destructive combat
power against the adversary's personnel and equipment, that is, tanks,
airplanes, artillery, air defense. C2W is discussed in detail in Chapter
By 1986, AirLand Battle further evolved this thinking by linking ground
and air operations to achieve depth and synchronization. A paramount consequence
of AirLand Battle was the intention to strike at reserve, reinforcing,
and second-echelon forces. This led in 1993 to an extended operational
strategy of deep operations, with long-range weapons and Special Forces.
Looking at high-value targets, deep operations strategy sought to destroy,
degrade, deny, and disrupt critical C2 nodes as one of its primary objectives.
Today, C2W operations integrate and synchronize the capabilities of PSYOP,
deception, OPSEC, and EW to facilitate the application of appropriate
systems and forces to execute IO. While C2W has had a primarily offensive
focus in the past, it now includes both C2-attack and C2-protect. Although
these two disciplines of C2W have been practiced by successful armies
since the beginning of recorded history, modern warfare with its emphasis
on information and INFOSYS requires a new perspective. Three factors make
C2W considerations critical when operating in today's environment:
- Continuous, high-volume information flow dictated by the relationship
of modern military technology and military operations.
- Vulnerabilities created by widespread incorporation of advanced technology
for INFOSYS and intelligence.
- The radical improvement in INFOSYS and intelligence capabilities resulting
from explosive advances in technology.
The complexity and range of today's MIE increases the difficulty of achieving
a comprehensive disruption of an adversary's C2 capabilities through any
single attack or application of combat power. This places a premium upon
the effective integration and synchronization of friendly physical destruction,
EW, deception, and PSYOP to achieve maximum results when launching attacks.
Likewise, careful integration and synchronization is also required to
fully protect our critical INFOSYS/intelligence architecture from adversary
attacks. Without the complete and thorough integration and synchronization
of the five C2W elements across both C2-attack and C2-protect, operational
effectiveness will be reduced and potential vulnerabilities exposed.
The goal of offensive C2W, specifically C2-attack, is to gain control
over our adversary's C2 function, both in terms of flow of information
and level of situational awareness. With effective C2-attack, we can either
prevent an adversary from exercising effective C2 or leverage it to our
C2-attack can strike at the adversary's capabilities at all echelons,
targeting personnel, equipment, communications, and facilities in an effort
to disrupt or shape adversary C2. RII plays a key role in C2-attack planning
and operations, with the creation and maintenance of regional data bases
on personal, historical, and cultural influences, intelligence-preparation-of-the
battlefield (IPB), and battle damage assessments (BDA)--both soft and
hard kill. The principal C2-attack approach for influencing the adversary's
C2 is the synchronized application of the six information activities.
C2-protect seeks to maintain effective C2 of friendly forces by negating
or turning to a friendly advantage the adversary's efforts to influence,
degrade, or destroy friendly C2 systems. C2-protect is divided into active
and passive measures and seeks to limit the vulnerability of forces (personnel,
equipment, and information) to hostile action, even as deployed forces
face ever-expanding threats and adversary capabilities. C2-protect includes
countering an adversary's propaganda to prevent it from affecting friendly
operations, options, public opinion, and the morale of friendly troops.
CIVIL AFFAIRS OPERATIONS
CA support to IO provides an integral role of interfacing with critical
actors and influences in the GIE. Whether in peace, conflict, or war,
conducting military operations, consolidating combat power, and seeking
information dominance are improved when leveraging CA support. Although
conditions differ across the spectrum of conflict, CA activities establish,
maintain, influence, or exploit relations among military forces, civil
authorities, and the civilian populace in an AO to facilitate military
operations. For example, during Operation Restore Democracy, CA activities
informed the local populace through the news media, public discussion,
and PSYOP informational products and programs about the reestablishment
of the legitimate Haitian government. This created an information exchange
that promoted understanding of, confidence in, and positive perception
of measures supporting military operations.
The civil-military operations center (CMOC) can be established to interact
with key actors and influences in the GIE, such as NGOs, PVOs, and local
authorities. CA elements support military operations by applying their
skills and experience in public administration, economics, public facilities,
linguistics, cultural affairs, and civil information and by collecting
information relevant to the commander's critical information requirements
(CCIR). CA personnel have an intricate and important role in providing
information during both the intelligence cycle and the operational planning
Commanders include CA operations in their planning guidance. CA planners
must consider all available support and information to ensure successful
completion of the CA mission. CA forces are well-suited to plan, coordinate,
support, and, if directed, supervise various operations to support US
PUBLIC AFFAIRS OPERATIONS
Most military operations are conducted under the full glare of public
scrutiny. National and international news media coverage plays a major
role in quickly forming public debate and shaping public opinion. The
news media serves as a public forum for the analysis and critique of goals,
objectives, and actions. It can impact political, strategic, and operational
planning, decisions, and mission success or failure. The reality of near
real-time information, processed and transmitted at greater speeds and
to wider audiences than in the past, has bridged the gap between what
occurs on the ground and the goals and objectives of the National Military
Strategy. Therefore, the public affairs officer (PAO) monitors public
perceptions and develops and disseminates clear and objective messages
about military operations. Moreover, commanders must involve themselves
also in this dimension of IO. PA personnel--
- Assist the commander by working to establish the conditions that lead
to confidence in and support of the Army.
- Support open, independent reporting and access to units and soldiers.
- Seek a balanced, fair, and credible presentation of information that
communicates the Army story through an expedited flow of complete, accurate,
and timely information.
The commander uses his internal information program (formerly command
information) to inform soldiers about where they fit in, what is expected
of them, and how they help accomplish the mission. This information also
helps soldiers combat the effects of enemy propaganda or misinformation.
Commanders, through their PAO, initiate, direct, and emphasize internal
information topics and programs. Every soldier must receive information
specific to the operation through command channels and world, national,
and local news. The media is an important information channel to the American
public; however commanders, staff officers, and soldiers must balance
OPSEC and other operational requirements when working with the media.
PA personnel support commanders by assessing the information environment
and advising them on the PA implications of current and future operations.
Leaders understand the importance of achieving a balanced, fair, and credible
presentation of information to both internal and external audiences. Leaders
integrate PA into their decision-making process by considering it in their
assessment of the situation and development of courses of actions, plans,
and orders. Commanders ensure that PA operations are synchronized with
other combat functions and promote early coordination of PA, CA, and PSYOP
functions during the planning process. A continual exchange of information
must exist during execution as well. Although each function has a specific
audience, information will overlap, making it crucial that messages are
deconflicted and coordinated.
Leaders have struggled with how to best capitalize on available information
throughout the history of organized warfare. The drive to know as much
as possible about their own forces--location, combat effectiveness, current
activity--and the enemy's--location, disposition, combat effectiveness,
intended actions--has been a durable characteristic of successful commanders,
regardless of the time period or nationality. Today, commanders operate
in an environment increasingly marked by the rapid flow of information
and decisions among strategic, operational, and tactical levels. These
factors are complicated by an explosive expansion in the opportunities
for access and the manipulation of operationally relevant information
by the wide array of individuals, organizations, and systems found in
Ultimately, effective C2 depends on ensuring that the right person has
the right information at the right time. Intelligence, the commander's
source of relevant information about the adversary, takes on increased,
even crucial, importance in the Information Age. Because IO give battlespace
global connectivity, intelligence on current or potential adversaries
must be prepared on a global scale. Interaction with the MIE requires
timely intelligence about many aspects of current or potential adversaries,
to include cultural, political, and commercial aspects.
Commanders must have information to command. Information allows the commander's
decision-execution cycle to function and gives direction to actions by
the force to accomplish their operational missions.
The collection, processing, and dissemination of relevant information
is the key to achieving situational awareness throughout the force, which
creates the opportunity for unity of effort toward mission accomplishment.
The commander operates within the GIE, adjusting his MIE to enhance his
situational awareness as appropriate for the operation at hand.
The commander focuses on RII requirements. The commander's operational
requirements dictate the critical information requirements, which in turn
dictate the RII collection effort. To be effective, the unit's intelligence
cycle must be managed to provide information based on the priorities in
the concept of operations. A key to successful IO is an accurate IPB focused
on the MIE. During combat operations intelligence analysts must continually
perform an information-oriented BDA to ensure IO remain effective. RII
support to IO begins in peacetime and must be continuous throughout all
phases of an operation or campaign.
Advances in information technology are mandating changes in how RII support
is provided. First, communications connectivity allows broadcast dissemination
of information. This incorporates direct downlink of raw data from multiple
sensors to multiple echelons simultaneously and the broadcast of finished
information products from theater, departmental, or national production
agencies to deployed forces. Information can be provided on a push or
pull mode to deployed units.
IO requires the fusion of information from a variety of sources. Advances
in sensors, processors, and communicators are combining to provide detailed,
timely reconnaissance and surveillance of almost any place on the globe.
Both military and nonmilitary sources provide information that can be
used to produce RII. Open-source intelligence or reporting will provide
much order of battle (OB) and technical data. An OB focused on command,
control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) includes data
collection and information processing systems, command systems, and reconnaissance,
intelligence, surveillance, and target acquisition (RISTA) systems.
Successful integration of IO requires an IPB grounded in a thorough understanding
of an adversary's capabilities and decision-making style. An IPB based
on C4I focuses on an adversary's decision requirements. These are selected
in relation to the friendly commander's priority intelligence requirements
(PIR) and describe in detail the decisions the adversary must make to
conduct his battle plan. From there, the focus shifts to the information
sources that feed or influence the adversary's decisions such as sensors,
the platforms on which they are deployed, and their supporting C3 systems.
The results should include data on current operations, capabilities, and
vulnerabilities. RII as a component of IO is addressed in detail in Chapter
INFOSYS collect, process, and disseminate information relating to current
and future operations. Automation has made great advances in information
processing, but human beings remain the most effective system for determining
relevance and fusing information. INFOSYS are those means that enable
commanders and their staffs to--
- Monitor the current situation.
- Synchronize operations.
- Integrate and synchronize operations across battlefield operating
- Coordinate joint air and naval support.
- Update weapon systems targeting parameters.
- Control close, deep and rear operations as one operation.
INFOSYS are essential to the effective application of military power.
The Army's integrated architecture of advanced INFOSYS maximizes the C2
capabilities of land forces in all operating environments. The road map
for exploiting current and future information technologies to enhance
Army operations is the Army Enterprise Strategy (AES). The AES and other
initiatives like C4I for the Warrior are reinforcing the important contributions
INFOSYS make to information-based warfare. Of particular importance is
the evolution of the Army's comprehensive information architecture with
its three supporting initiatives focused on operational, system,
and technical architectures. When completed, this initiative will
create a common operating environment (COE) of standardized, interactive
systems and templates for the collection, storage, and manipulation of
all Army data bases.
The operational architecture will establish the required connectivity
among processes, functions, information, and organizations. It will show
what we do, what information we need to do it, and how often we need to
exchange information within the force.
The system architecture seeks to identify relationships among C4I
components of systems and create physical connectivity within the information
system. It uses an organizational context to show system allocation and
network structures and helps document engineering decisions, such as specific
information protocols and bandwidth.
The technical architecture will establish a set of rules governing
the arrangement, interaction, and interdependence of all the parts and
elements that together constitute our INFOSYS. It specifies the permissible
standards for designing C4I capabilities and is critical to the creation
and maintenance of interactive systems.
The integration of INFOSYS--both vertically and horizontally--facilitates
tactical and operational agility, initiative, depth, synchronization,
and versatility essential to Army success in joint and combined operations.
Global connectivity is essential for linking strategic, operational,
and tactical aspects of IO and the ability to project forces worldwide.
INFOSYS support operations globally with communications automation architectures,
both space- and terrain-based. However configured, INFOSYS can provide
such support with a minimum of physical repositioning to support C2, whether
in a strategic deployment phase or moving for a tactical attack. Both
military and commercial INFOSYS play important roles in this architecture.
Today, the Army applies information technologies to digitize the battlefield
by providing integrated C2 that flows across each level of operation or
war. The migration of the current Army Command and Control System (ACCS)
to the Army Battle Command System (ABCS) incorporates a common C2 operating
environment at all echelons. This integration of modern INFOSYS with our
tactical units continues to enhance their connectivity, decision-making,
and, ultimately, lethality, survivability, and the ability to control
the tempo of operations. Advanced weapons system and sensor technologies
based on interoperability, digitization, and spectrum supremacy will contribute
directly to improved effectiveness of the force. Chapter
5 discusses the Army INFOSYS architecture in detail.
Any military--like any company or corporation--has to perform at
least four key functions with respect to knowledge. It must acquire,
process, distribute, and protect information, while selectively denying
or distributing it to its adversaries and or allies.
War and Anti-War: Survival at the Dawn of the 21st Century
IO involves acquiring, using, protecting, exploiting, denying, and managing
information and INFOSYS. When effectively executed, these critical activities
supplement the human skills of battle command, speed decision making,
minimize or eliminate uncertainty, focus combat power, help protect the
force, harness organizational capabilities, link the MIE to the GIE, and
enhance situational awareness for soldiers and leaders. These activities
apply to both information and INFOSYS (hardware, people, organizations,
and processes). Although listed sequentially, these activities are concurrent
and seamless in their application (see Figure 2-3).
Figure 2-3. Information Operations Activities
Commanders must consider the nature of the information required before
allocating resources to acquire it. Initial questions include--
- What information is needed?
- What is the nature of that information?
- How can that information be acquired?
Necessary information includes mission, enemy, troops, terrain and weather,
and time available (METT-T) and the basic who, what, when, where, why
questions. The nature of that information includes its accuracy, timeliness,
and its overall relevance to the situation in consonance with the CCIR.
Considering the available information sources and the nature of that information,
commanders develop technical and tactical plans to acquire critical information.
Information can be acquired through personnel, technical means, intelligence
collection systems, tactical reporting, and intelligence or information
disseminated from other DOD or non-DOD agencies at operational, strategic,
or national levels. Collection of information about adversaries and the
environment is managed through the RII collection cycle.
Commanders determine the critical information for each operation and
publish those requirements through their CCIR. The commander alone decides
what information is critical based on the mission, his experience, and
the higher echelon commander's intent. The staff may recommend CCIR to
the commander as--
- Priority intelligence requirements to determine what the commander
wants or needs to know about the enemy, his purpose, and/or terrain
(how I see the enemy).
- Friendly forces information requirements (FFIR) to allow the
commander to determine the combat capabilities of his or adjacent friendly
units (how I see myself).
- Essential elements of friendly information (EEFI) to allow
the commander to determine how he must protect the force from the enemy's
information-gathering systems (how can I prevent the enemy force
from seeing me).
The CCIR is normally noted in paragraph 3d of the operations order/operations
plan (OPORD/OPLAN). Information about friendly activities and status is
coordinated through unit SOPs and OPLANs. Information is also acquired
using a more general information collection cycle focusing on gathering
relevant information from other sources and influences in the MIE. The
information needs of the commander are not answered by a single source,
- A combination of his own electronic systems.
- Operational activities such as reconnaissance and security.
- Human intelligence (HUMINT) activities.
- Strategic or national intelligence.
- Interface with local or international police and news media.
Information is perishable and has a temporal quality that is often controlled
by a set of dynamic conditions or decisions. Events can make an item of
information irrelevant or so unrepresentative as to portray a highly inaccurate
picture of reality. Information beyond a certain age will detract from
the commander's situational awareness. Standard operating procedures (SOPs),
CCIRs, OPLANs, and collection plans must all be sensitive to perishability
of information. Moreover, from a technical perspective, INFOSYS managers
must respond by managing the systems and information to enable assured,
timely communication and decision making.
The commander is able to see his battlespace through the use of space,
air, and ground systems to acquire relevant information and provide a
current situation. The commander expands his thinking to include all INFOSYS
and organizations accessible in the GIE. Once the data is acquired, analyzed,
and collated, the information is used to update and validate a common
situational awareness. This common situational awareness provides the
basis to refine, continue, or adjust decisions, plans, and operations.
- Information is focused and used by issuing guidance, prioritizing
assets, and establishing requirements.
- Staffs then refine the guidance into OPLANS or OPORDS. They seek to
integrate information at all echelons and plan the use of all available
information, regardless of the source.
The most timely, accurate, or relevant information, particularly in operations
other than war (OOTW), may come from sources outside the unit or military
channels. A unit must make use of both organic and nonorganic INFOSYS.
Nonorganic systems are either DOD governmental or non-DOD (GIE). Use of
other US Government systems, (DOD and non-DOD) is coordinated with higher
commands. Using systems outside the government is more complex. Units
can use some services openly and passively, such as listening to, or subscribing
to, broadcast media. Units can also make overt use of services such as
communications relays or weather forecasting. However, commanders must
be aware of the legal and policy limits on their use of any non-DOD INFOSYS.
How the information nets within an organization are linked together can
provide multiple conduits for information. Horizontal internetting of
INFOSYS at the lowest possible levels provides a deeper, multidimensional
picture than traditional, stovepipe reporting.
While the proliferation of information and information technology can
be a great advantage, it is also a potentially significant risk that must
be accounted for in every operation. Protection of soldiers and equipment,
although not new, has increased in importance in today's information-rich
environment. Friendly information and INFOSYS must be protected throughout
the battlespace. Operationally, protecting information requires viewing
friendly vulnerabilities from the enemy's C2-attack perspective. Commanders
must examine the vulnerability of their soldiers and systems to exploitation
or attack by an enemy capable of attacking friendly C2 on a wide front
by employing EW, destruction, deception, and propaganda.
In order to stop or delay a weapon or system from functioning, an adversary
might attack the information or INFOSYS that enable that system. For example,
an adversary might introduce a malicious software code through a communications
network directly into the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System
(AFATDS) to disrupt the sharing and distribution of combat information
with other Army and joint C2 systems. Actions taken to protect the capability
to operate unconstrained in the MIE battlespace are considered part of
Information and INFOSYS must be protected at the electronic, physical,
and human levels, as described in relationship to the potential threat--all
without impeding the overall operation. Security programs that identify
threats to C4I systems also take on increased importance while in garrison
because the porous and open nature of the GIE makes the C4I information
infrastructure vulnerable to attack or exploitation at any time. As part
of planning for both battlespace and garrison operations, the signal officer
analyzes the unit's information structure to prioritize critical paths,
systems, and data for protection. Everything cannot be protected. Therefore,
the operations officer must perform a risk management analysis to identify
essential information and INFOSYS that must be kept free from disruption
Elements of the infrastructure to be protected are data, computers, communications
systems, and support facilities. Planners must integrate elements of the
GIE into plans to ensure that commanders consider their impact, or potential
impact in any operation. Assessment and vulnerability analysis systems
must provide the timely and accurate data needed to identify and target
threats and potential threats to friendly INFOSYS.
Protecting computer and communications systems from enemy intrusion,
disruption, and destruction is an initial basic step in an overall protection
approach. However, commanders must also be sensitive to enemy attempts
at deception and propaganda. A resourceful enemy may employ propaganda
to predispose a commander and his staff toward a specific course of action
and then exploit that mindset with a deception operation. IO may often
take place under degraded conditions. Besides adversary or accidental
actions, natural phenomena may degrade or disrupt equipment or services.
Because of the complexity and fragility of INFOSYS, a unit's plans should
include procedures for operating without all the information infrastructure.
Joint Pub 1-02 describes exploitation as "taking full advantage
of any information that has come to hand for. . . military operational
purposes." All information environments and systems surrounding an
operation, friendly and adversarial, military and nonmilitary, offer chances
for exploitation. Generally, exploiting an adversary's INFOSYS is making
use of that adversary's INFOSYS data or communications without his knowledge.
A flexible approach to exploitation is preferred. The level of exploitation,
whether simply monitoring or corrupting data bases, depends on the situation
and the desired objective. It may not always mean directly attacking or
degrading an adversary's ability to C2. Exploitation involves--
- Reading the adversary's signals.
- Intercepting communications.
- Analyzing signatures.
- Extracting from data bases.
- Establishing the order of battle.
- Taking action to deny, degrade, or manipulate those information capabilities.
Exploitation depends on a thorough understanding of the adversary and
the GIE surrounding a potential AO.
Information-gathering and intelligence work must begin in peacetime to
establish the analysis of the AO and how potential adversaries operate.
Knowledge of the adversary's information infrastructure is as important
as knowledge of a potential adversary's strategies, tactics, techniques,
and procedures. Knowledge of the adversary's infrastructure will lead
to an assessment of personnel, facilities, sensors, processors, and decision-making
process. The assessment model asks the question: "How reliant is
the adversary on the GIE for information?" This in turn affects how
the unit (friendly) interacts with the GIE, to include the media, government
agencies, NGOs, and foreign governments. Intelligence gained through exploitation
supports C2W planning and operations, especially deception, PSYOP, and
The offensive aspect of IO, C2-attack, makes possible the goal
of attacking an adversary simultaneously at all levels with overwhelming
force. C2-attack is intended to prevent an adversary from exercising effective
C2 of his forces by denying the adversary information or influencing,
degrading, or destroying the adversary's information and INFOSYS.
IO gives the commander the means to attack an adversary throughout the
depth of the battlespace, far beyond the range of direct or indirect fire
systems. The goal is to degrade the adversary's confidence in either his
data or his ability to command and control operations. By attacking or
confusing his sense of the battlefield, friendly forces gain information
dominance and a subsequent relative advantage in applying combat power
or controlling a situation in OOTW.
Information denial operations generally require time and occur over relatively
large areas. To blind or deafen an adversary requires that most of his
major surveillance and reconnaissance systems be influenced or engaged.
Therefore, attacks of adversary INFOSYS are normally planned as a series
of engagements, contributing to a larger operation or higher objective.
These engagements are normally conducted quickly and against a specific
target, such as jamming a receiver or using the Army Tactical Missile
System (ATACMS) to destroy an adversary's C2 node.
Adversary space-based systems and UAVs pose significant problems. Because
of difficulties in locating or engaging these platforms, commanders may
be forced to use indirect means, such as camouflage or deception, to counter
them. At echelons below corps level, the commander may lack the assets
to perform all C2-attack missions, particularly those involving battlefield
deception and PSYOP. However, the value in denying an adversary effective
command remains important and commanders at all levels need to be prepared
to contribute to achieving that objective. Depending on METT-T, the commander
might target an element of the adversary's information flow to blind him
or prevent effective response. For example, by targeting RISTA, fire direction,
or command nets, a commander can limit the effectiveness of an adversary's
indirect fire systems.
Commanders must continually assess exploit and deny capabilities
to strike an optimum balance that will achieve the greatest payoff in
dominating enemy IO. Multiple attack options in IO will result from analysis
and assessment of potential targets. Generally, the earlier an adversary's
decision-making cycle is disrupted, the greater the effect it can have
on his capabilities. It is often more effective to disrupt the adversary's
early sensing or decision-making processes rather than trying to disrupt
execution of a decision already made. Operational commanders must weigh
the relative advantages to be gained by attacking adversary C2 nodes against
the potential loss of intelligence from adversary signatures, radiation,
or emissions and the need to protect intelligence methods and sources.
In order to conduct full-dimensional operations, information and INFOSYS
require careful coordination and synchronization. With guidance issued,
the staff coordinates and integrates information requirements and INFOSYS
to synchronize the critical information flow with the operational concept.
Management information and INFOSYS must focus on operational requirements
that will derive information from reconnaissance, counterreconnaissance,
communications, and security operations. Managing information includes
managing the electromagnetic spectrum (EMS); deciding what sources and
systems to use; ensuring a reliable flow of information between nodes
and levels (horizontal and vertical integration); and resolving differences
among information from multiple sources.
Operational requirements guide the management of the EMS. The principal
functions using the EMS that require planning and control are--
- Intelligence collection.
- Resolving electromagnetic interference.
This planning must be an integral part of operations planning--in many
cases preceding a decision on a scheme of maneuver or fire support and
definitely preceding mission execution.
Effective management of information and assets allows information to
flow horizontally and vertically across BOSs to enable effective planning,
preparation, decision making, and execution. Information should also flow
vertically between echelons to enable concurrent planning. This serves
to eliminate duplicate efforts and unnecessary redundancy, which allows
systems to deal with time-sensitive, relevant information. It also reduces
the signature and noise levels of units in the battlespace. The keys to
this effective communications and information flow are connectivity, throughput,
and resilience. Units can manage connectivity among their organic assets.
The difficulty comes in maintaining horizontal and vertical connectivity
outside the unit, particularly when dealing with forces using older or
different communications and INFOSYS. Connectivity is accomplished through
the maintenance of electronic and human links vertically and laterally
outside the unit. When dealing with forces or units less technically capable,
teams must be prepared to deploy with specialists or liaison personnel
equipped with updated equipment.
Resilience is the ability of INFOSYS, from a technical and management
perspective, to provide the necessary connectivity and continuity when
INFOSYS are degraded. Additionally, Army leaders and planners must understand
how military information and systems interconnect and interact with the
GIE. Overreliance on commercial systems, particularly satellites and host
nation telecommunications networks, may impose restrictions or limitations.
Close management and consistent coordination will help assure the availability,
reliability, and timeliness of C4I assets.