Legal Outlet

Prospects for the Rule of Law in Cyberspace (The LeTort Papers)

The application of international law and legal principles in cyberspace is a topic that has caused confusion, doubt, and interminable discussions between lawyers since the earliest days of the internationalization of the Internet. The still unresolved debate over whether cyberspace constitutes a fundamentally new domain that requires fundamentally new laws to govern it reveals basic

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The application of international law and legal principles in cyberspace is a topic that has caused confusion, doubt, and interminable discussions between lawyers since the earliest days of the internationalization of the Internet. The still unresolved debate over whether cyberspace constitutes a fundamentally new domain that requires fundamentally new laws to govern it reveals basic ideological divides. On the one hand, the Euro-Atlantic community led by the United States believes, in broad terms, that activities in cyberspace require no new legislation, and existing legal obligations are sufficient. On the other, a large number of other states led by Russia and China believe that new international legal instruments are essential in order to govern information security overall, including those expressed through the evolving domain of cyberspace. Russia in particular argues that the challenges presented by cyberspace are too urgent to wait for customary law to develop as it has done in other domains; instead, urgent action is needed.
 
This Letort Paper will provide an overview of moves toward establishing norms and the rule of law in cyberspace, and the potential for establishing further international norms of behavior.
 
Strategic Studies Institute recommends this Letort Paper not only to policymakers, legislative leaders, and researchers focusing on law and policy in the cyber field, but also more broadly to those engaged in protecting the United States against other forms of information operations, including subversion, destabilization, and disinformation.  As shown in this Letort Paper, legislative initiatives by potential adversaries provide important insights into the conceptual framework within which they consider and plan unfriendly actions. Attorneys within the information security arena and cyber professionals may also be interested in this text.  Undergraduate and Graduate Students studying national and global security with an emphasis on information cyber security coursework may be interested in this text for additional research for classes, such as: Ethics, law and policy,network security, IT Security Defense Countermeasures; Cyber Investigation, Cybersecurity Law and Policy, Introduction to Cyber Conflict, Cyber Defense Strategies, Information Sharing and Safeguarding, Globalization and Threats and International Security,Intelligence and Strategic Analysis, Security and Civil Liberties, Methods of Strategic Analysis, and more.

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