Posted on February 23, 2008,

Project Reynard; A New U.S. Spy Project

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I’ve read many articles about how organized crime around the world has been using online games such as World of Warcraft to launder money. Apparently, the government believes that terrorists will also begin using online gaming as a recruitment tool. I’m not sure how realistic that is, or if this is just another hokey addition to the “War On Terror”. When I think about it, we may actually want Al Qaeda playing WoW. After a while, their entire organization will become addicted to the game and not have time to do anything else.

Apparently, the government is starting up a new project titled ‘Project Reynard’ where the behavioral norms of virtual worlds will be studied. I’m not sure if they will catch any terrorists this way, but I’d love to see what data they come up with. The world of online gaming is still a mysterious place to outsiders and perhaps some good will come out of this when it comes to public perception of gamers.

* The cultural and behavioral norms of virtual worlds and gaming are generally unstudied. Therefore, Reynard will seek to identify the emerging social, behavioral and cultural norms in virtual worlds and gaming environments. The project would then apply the lessons learned to determine the feasibility of automatically detecting suspicious behavior and actions in the virtual world.

* If it shows early promise, this small seedling effort may increase its scope to a full project.

Reynard will conduct unclassified research in a public virtual world environment. The research will use publicly available data and will begin with observational studies to establish baseline normative behaviors.

Via Wired

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5 Comments on Project Reynard; A New U.S. Spy Project

Gigarayzor

On February 23, 2008 at 1:15 pm

So… some guy in the government got the bright idea of convincing the government to pay him to play WoW? Brilliant! Of course, it’s probably a waste of the taxpayers money, but kudos to that guy.

Blake

On February 26, 2008 at 9:06 pm

No dude you have it all wrong, they are using this as an excuse to keep their eyes on the American citizens. This has to be some invasion of privacy, seriously will I have to watch what I say and do when I play halo? Because I’m sure they will eventually move on to that, I can’t stand this country anymore I need to leave before it’s to late. Before we know it we will all have surveilence cams set up on our property and in our houses, making sure the
“cattle” don’t stray away from the farm, and by this I mean they basiccaly consider every citizen a potential threat.

John Boy

On February 26, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Freakin Awesome !! Terrorists can now launder money as a night elf mohawk.

Thanks Mr. T

gigarayzor2

On February 26, 2008 at 10:33 pm

GIGARAYZOR IS STUPID!!!!! :lol: :lol: :twisted:

Ryker

On June 14, 2008 at 1:08 pm

Kudos! and…. I also hope its not too late…is it?