As tensions rise between North Korea and the United States, Secretary of Homeland Security, John Kelly, proclaimed North Korea currently is a more probable cyber threat than a kinetic threat. Given North Korea’s inclination to use digital weapons over the past few years, this is not a controversial statement, but it should not be assumed that this is a matter simply contained to the governments.
Yesterday’s RSA keynote by Brad Smith, Microsoft’s President and Chief Legal Officer, has the industry finally buzzing about the creation of global digital norms. In his accompanying blogpost, “The Need for a Digital Geneva Convention”, Mr. Smith moves beyond simply reiterating the stats behind the breadth and depth of digital attacks. He provides concrete recommendations for pursuing law and order to the digital domain.
On October 7, 1996, the Pentagon publicly attributed – without repercussions – a vast digital data breach and espionage to the Russians, later dubbed Moonlight Maze. Fast forward twenty years to the date, and President Obama publicly attributed the DNC digital attacks to Russia.
2016 may well be the year of cyber sovereignty, with increased censorship and a decline in internet freedoms. China and Russia each pushed forth new domestic controls, with many others following in their steps. This threatens the global pursuit of internet freedoms, and may be indicative of a larger inflection point toward the Balkanization of the internet.
May 18, 2016
Digital Sovereignty: Multi-Stakeholder vs. Beggar-Thy-Neighbor Digital Futures