In This Review

The End of Intelligence: Espionage and State Power in the Information Age
The End of Intelligence: Espionage and State Power in the Information Age
By David Tucker
Stanford Security Studies, 2014, 256 pp.

Conventional wisdom holds that new information technologies have had a transformational effect on security and intelligence; this book casts doubt on that assumption. Tucker explores how new technologies have affected the state’s role as a collector and manipulator of information, examining how they have changed the nature of espionage and the quality of intelligence assessments. Tucker develops his argument methodically, looking at the role of information in counterintelligence and covert action, regular and irregular warfare. He concludes that the information age has been less transformational than supposed. Contrary to claims that new technologies have generally favored insurgents and revolutionaries, Tucker argues that they have likely benefited states even more. Although the book is not always convincing, it presents a serious and challenging analysis.