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This article analyses the Islamic State media department’s involvement in deceptive influence efforts. Relying on an extensive database of the department’s products from its origins to the present (Tawhid wal-Jihad, Al-Qa’ida in Iraq, the Mujahidin Shura Council, the Islamic State of Iraq and ISIS), Craig Whiteside identifies situations when decisions are made to involve the media in deception efforts, and why. He finds that the Islamic State used deception infrequently and carefully, usually in a defensive manner, while carefully balancing the need for credible and truthful information activities outside its deception efforts.
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