Troops Battle Disinformation Cyber Attacks – The Army has created a division of more than 14,000 soldiers to tackle threats such as cyber attacks and propaganda spread online.
Soldiers from the secretive 77th Brigade disinformation unit will combine forces with electronic warfare and intelligence specialists to create the new 6th Division.
Based at Upavon in Wiltshire, troops will carry out tasks such as jamming enemy signals and disrupting communications.
It will also include soldiers on computers working with GCHQ spies to take out internet trolls and wage its own offensive cyber attacks – such as erasing propaganda.
The 14,500-strong force is the first division dedicated to tackling the blurred boundaries between conventional and unconventional warfare.
Lieutenant General Ivan Jones, who in his role as Commander Field Army has responsibility for preparing for new threats, said: ‘The character of warfare continues to change. The Army must remain adaptable and evolve as a fighting force.‘
He said the intention was to ‘rebalance‘ the Army‘s formations to meet the challenges of ‘constant competition‘.
Lieutenant General Jones added: ‘The speed of change is moving at a remarkable rate and it will only get faster and more complex.‘ The 6th Division, established today, will focus on cyber, electronic warfare, intelligence, information operations and unconventional warfare.
It will include 1st Signal Brigade, 11th Signal Brigade, 1st Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance Brigade, 77th Brigade and the Specialist Infantry Group.
Army chiefs were disturbed in June when Russian outlets spread fake information about British troops behaving badly during airborne exercises in Croatia.
Under the changes, the 1st Division will take on responsibility for national contingencies, including the evacuation of British nationals from war-torn areas. The 3rd Division will remain the Army‘s primary armoured fighting force.