The good old days of cold war disinformatia are gone. Social media are increasingly relevant in shaping the public opinion, but they are just “eco chambers”.
National security is in the hand of Member States, not of the European Union, under Article 4, par. 2, TEU. But cybersecurity is not only an issue involving national security, as it has much to do with trust with the digital economy, the freedom of speech, the free trade, the respect of citizens’ rights, their data protection and privacy; in a few words, it is a basic element of the European Single Market.
In June 2017, the Council of the European Union agreed to develop the cyber diplomatic toolbox, a joint EU diplomatic response to deter malicious cyber operations. The cyber diplomatic toolbox is a potential game changer for EU cybersecurity as it signals the potential consequences aggressors might face when they target EU member states’ information systems. However, there is more to that than meets the eyes.
Information communications technologies (ICTs) are the backbone of Europe's economy. They fuel new opportunities for citizens to connect, for governments to provide increased access to public services, for utilities to deliver critical services, and for businesses to serve as an engine of economic growth. The remarkable opportunities associated with being connected and participating in the Internet economy are enticing countries and corporations to further expand their digital footprint.
Cyber space is a complex environment with many factors and dimensions that make it unstable and, at the same time, fascinating and interesting.
As governments become increasingly involved in cyberspace for military purposes, they tend to consider the cyber domain as critical part of their security strategies. This growing reliance on cyber assets calls for deeper investigation on the features of cyberspace as well as their impact on state rivalry. The paper draws from the insights of Offence/Defense Balance (ODB) theory to discuss whether competition in cyberspace may become an incentive to the use of force. In particular, ODB theory postulates that whenever defense is (or is held to be) more expensive relative do offense, states will have an incentive to act aggressively. Unfortunately, three features of cyberspace give offense an advantage over defense: the central place of vulnerabilities, the different pace of improvements for defense and offense technologies, the difficulty in attribution. The main conclusion of this argument is that the cyber-attacks in the future are likely to become more and more common.
Can the United States rely on cyber-deterrence – the threat to retaliate in kind if attacked in cyberspace in very damaging ways? The difficulties in attribution were thought decisive until DoD leaders argued that attribution was actually good. Perhaps the attribution of those who repeatedly penetrate systems, haul away copious information, and fear no consequences (e.g., Chinese hackers) is good (it never gets tested). But attribution for cyberwarriors who need only penetrate once, need not haul away large amounts of information, and may well bear consequences is a different thing entirely. The paper also moots how deterrence measures may be applied to stop Chinese hacking when their activity (espionage) is sanctioned by international norms and carried out by other countries (albeit for different reasons), and where the harm done is hard to quantify.
Deep throat Edward Snowden’s revelations about the e-spying carried out by the United States set off a political storm in Washington and the capitals of its allies and is spurring President Barack Obama to speed up the timing for reforming the National Security Agency, reforms that should create a new equilibrium between the nation’s security and individual freedoms.
The critical information infrastructure (CII) represents the indispensable "nerves and blood" that allow modern societies to work and live. In fact, without it, there would be no distribution of energy, no services like banking or finance, no air traffic control and so on. The CII allows remote control and management of commodities and services, thus reducing costs, to utility companies and consumers alike, and improving efficiency. But the CII was born and developed with an intrinsic, and potentially disastrous, defect: security was never considered a top priority. Today, organized crime, rogue groups or even states may plan to disrupt or destroy portion of the CII or essential services, thus putting in serious dangers governments and economies around the world. This paper outlines the major elements of the CII and the risks to which it might be subject today and tomorrow.
The July 10-11, 2013 US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED) made major strides in stabilizing and moving forward US-China relations, building upon the momentum spurred by the June presidential summit between US President, Barack Obama, and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, in Sunnylands, California. The US and China have hosted the annual S&ED since 2009, and before then as a separate Strategic Dialogue and Strategic Economic Dialogue, which were initiated in 2005 and 2006 respectively.