Visible to the public Challenges pertaining to cyber war under international law

TitleChallenges pertaining to cyber war under international law
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsWatney, M.
Conference NameCyber Security, Cyber Warfare and Digital Forensic (CyberSec), 2014 Third International Conference on
Date PublishedApril
KeywordsChallenges, Computer crime, cyber war, Cyberspace, cyberspace governance, cyberspace intrusion, cyberspace state-level intrusion, Estonia, Force, international law, Law, legal position, Manuals, security of data, state-level cyber intrusion, Stuxnet, Tallinn Manual

State-level intrusion in the cyberspace of another country seriously threatens a state's peace and security. Consequently many types of cyberspace intrusion are being referred to as cyber war with scant regard to the legal position under international law. This is but one of the challenges facing state-level cyber intrusion. The current rules of international law prohibit certain types of intrusion. However, international law does not define which intrusion fall within the prohibited category of intrusion nor when the threshold of intrusion is surpassed. International lawyers have to determine the type of intrusion and threshold on a case-by-case basis. The Tallinn Manual may serve as guideline in this assessment, but determination of the type of intrusion and attribution to a specific state is not easily established. The current rules of international law do not prohibit all intrusion which on statelevel may be highly invasive and destructive. Unrestrained cyber intrusion may result in cyberspace becoming a battle space in which state(s) with strong cyber abilities dominate cyberspace resulting in resentment and fear among other states. The latter may be prevented on an international level by involving all states on an equal and transparent manner in cyberspace governance.

Citation Key6913962