Distributed Denial-of-Service Attacks under Public International Law: State Responsibility in Cyberwar
The IUP Journal of Cyber Law, Vol. VIII, Nos. 3 & 4, pp. 10-23, August & November 2009
Posted: 28 Nov 2009
Date Written: November 26, 2009
Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDOS) Attacks are a major weapon of cyberwarfare and are now also used during or before major political and military conflicts, such as the 2008 Russo-Georgian War, the Russian- Estonian political tensions as well as in the Middle East conflict. International Law is based on consensus and therefore naturally slow to react to new developments including this new tool of warfare. The same is true of many states. This raises the question of how to qualify DDoS Attacks under the existing rules of Public International Law. After investigating the legal nature of DDoS Attacks, the question needs to be asked which rules cover such attacks and who can be held responsible for DDoS Attacks, in particular such attacks which are conducted by (potentially paid and/or foreign) hackers on behalf of states.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation