Cyber-rumor sharing under a homeland security threat in the context of government Internet surveillance: The case of South-North Korea conflict

Kyounghee Kwon, H. Raghav Rao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cyber-rumors and falsehoods have increasingly become a hindrance to government strategic communication. Especially when there is a national security alert, anti-government rumors can become weapons that thwart government crisis information management. A key element for any government's successful cyber-rumor management is to understand what makes citizens prone to engaging in cyber-rumors. We focus on citizens' cyber-rumoring tendency that arises within the larger context of a nation's governance over the Internet. Specifically, this study examines how citizen's assessment of government Internet surveillance influences their engagement with cyber-rumors during a homeland security threat. Two surveys in South Korea find that citizens' government Internet surveillance concerns increased their cyber-rumor sharing intention, and the effect was particularly significant during the period of homeland security threat. This paper reconsiders the efficacy of government Internet surveillance in mitigating cyber-rumor propagation among general public, and expands the discussions by introducing the logic of 'distrust effect' on cyber-rumoring. Cyber-rumor monitoring through government Internet surveillance can be counterproductive to homeland security efforts unless government aligns its surveillance policy with citizens' informational norms on cyberspaces.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalGovernment Information Quarterly
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 3 2017

Fingerprint

rumor
North Korea
Homelands
surveillance
threat
Internet
citizen
information management
national security
virtual reality
weapon
South Korea
governance
monitoring
communication

Keywords

  • Citizen distrust
  • Cyber rumor
  • Governance over cyberspace
  • Government Internet surveillance
  • Homeland and National Security
  • Information policy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Library and Information Sciences
  • Law

Cite this

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abstract = "Cyber-rumors and falsehoods have increasingly become a hindrance to government strategic communication. Especially when there is a national security alert, anti-government rumors can become weapons that thwart government crisis information management. A key element for any government's successful cyber-rumor management is to understand what makes citizens prone to engaging in cyber-rumors. We focus on citizens' cyber-rumoring tendency that arises within the larger context of a nation's governance over the Internet. Specifically, this study examines how citizen's assessment of government Internet surveillance influences their engagement with cyber-rumors during a homeland security threat. Two surveys in South Korea find that citizens' government Internet surveillance concerns increased their cyber-rumor sharing intention, and the effect was particularly significant during the period of homeland security threat. This paper reconsiders the efficacy of government Internet surveillance in mitigating cyber-rumor propagation among general public, and expands the discussions by introducing the logic of 'distrust effect' on cyber-rumoring. Cyber-rumor monitoring through government Internet surveillance can be counterproductive to homeland security efforts unless government aligns its surveillance policy with citizens' informational norms on cyberspaces.",
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AU - Raghav Rao, H.

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N2 - Cyber-rumors and falsehoods have increasingly become a hindrance to government strategic communication. Especially when there is a national security alert, anti-government rumors can become weapons that thwart government crisis information management. A key element for any government's successful cyber-rumor management is to understand what makes citizens prone to engaging in cyber-rumors. We focus on citizens' cyber-rumoring tendency that arises within the larger context of a nation's governance over the Internet. Specifically, this study examines how citizen's assessment of government Internet surveillance influences their engagement with cyber-rumors during a homeland security threat. Two surveys in South Korea find that citizens' government Internet surveillance concerns increased their cyber-rumor sharing intention, and the effect was particularly significant during the period of homeland security threat. This paper reconsiders the efficacy of government Internet surveillance in mitigating cyber-rumor propagation among general public, and expands the discussions by introducing the logic of 'distrust effect' on cyber-rumoring. Cyber-rumor monitoring through government Internet surveillance can be counterproductive to homeland security efforts unless government aligns its surveillance policy with citizens' informational norms on cyberspaces.

AB - Cyber-rumors and falsehoods have increasingly become a hindrance to government strategic communication. Especially when there is a national security alert, anti-government rumors can become weapons that thwart government crisis information management. A key element for any government's successful cyber-rumor management is to understand what makes citizens prone to engaging in cyber-rumors. We focus on citizens' cyber-rumoring tendency that arises within the larger context of a nation's governance over the Internet. Specifically, this study examines how citizen's assessment of government Internet surveillance influences their engagement with cyber-rumors during a homeland security threat. Two surveys in South Korea find that citizens' government Internet surveillance concerns increased their cyber-rumor sharing intention, and the effect was particularly significant during the period of homeland security threat. This paper reconsiders the efficacy of government Internet surveillance in mitigating cyber-rumor propagation among general public, and expands the discussions by introducing the logic of 'distrust effect' on cyber-rumoring. Cyber-rumor monitoring through government Internet surveillance can be counterproductive to homeland security efforts unless government aligns its surveillance policy with citizens' informational norms on cyberspaces.

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KW - Government Internet surveillance

KW - Homeland and National Security

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