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FCW : May 15, 2013
What does international law mean for cyber war fare? Creating rules of engagement for operations in cyberspace has been an ongoing process at the Defense Department, where such rules --- if and when they are nished --- will remain classi ed. Now some say a new international manual intended for application to cyber warfare could provide a boost for the Pentagon. The "Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare," commissioned by NATO and prepared by several dozen experts, builds on estab- lished international law, much as the Pentagon s cyber rules are modeled on existing rules of engagement. The manual particu- larly focuses on the principles of jus ad bellum, which regulates use of force in international law, and jus in bello, which governs con- duct in armed con ict. According to cyber and legal experts, the Tallinn Manual will help supplement DOD s guide- lines for cyber warfare by offering additional insight and references to international law that can help with strategic, tactical and opera- tional decision-making. "I think the manual will have greater in uence on battle eld rules of engagement because there s a lot more granularity in the section on the use of in bello and humanitarian law," said Michael Schmitt, chairman of the Inter- national Law Department at the Naval War College. "I think that will feed into battle eld [rules of engagement], as distinct from the day-to-day [rules of engagement]." Schmitt, who spoke as part of a panel convened by the Atlantic Council in March, noted that one of the toughest aspects of cyber con ict is determining use of force, which the manual addresses. Determining what constitutes a cyberattack has also been a stick- ing point in U.S. policy-making, the panelists said. "For years, U.S. policy has been frozen, sort of burdened, with this overly generous de nition of computer network attacks that the Defense Department had put forth," said Gary Brown, deputy legal adviser for the U.S. and Canadian regional delegation at the International Committee of the Red Cross. "That made it dif cult to move forward because folks were reluctant to say that inter- national humanitarian law applies to...everything we do in cyber that denies, degrades, disrupts or destroys cyber systems. That s a very broad range of cyber activi- ties that would be governed by [international law], so there was a reluctance to put pen to paper." Brown, a retired Air Force colo- nel, said that attitude has changed in recent months --- something that might be re ected in how the Tallinn Manual affects DOD s cyberspace operations. "It will have some effect, and it will have positive effect because the United States is going to com- ply with international laws and comport with the rules as present- ed," he said. "We don t know what the rules are, but just this month [Gen. Keith Alexander, com- mander of U.S. Cyber Command] came out and indicated there Bookshelf 30 May 15, 2013 FCW.COM As DOD determines rules of cyber engagement, a NATO-commissioned manual offers guidance of a different sort BY AMBER CORRIN
April 30, 2013
May 30, 2013