Computer Network Operations Below the Level of Armed Force
19 Pages Posted: 2 Dec 2011 Last revised: 5 Apr 2015
Date Written: May 26, 2011
This paper concentrates on the legal analysis of computer network operations which do not cross the threshold of armed force in the sense of Art. 2 (4) UN Charter. Examining the alleged computer network operations against Estonia, Georgia and Iran (stuxnet) as case studies, the paper shows that sovereignty and territorial integrity are not alien to cyberspace, but are frequently used in relation to Internet activities. These fundamental principles of international law pose a limitation on state acts in cyberspace in the same way they do as to traditional conduct. The paper concludes with the finding that the Internet is territorially fragmented. The result is that crossborder computer network operations by states, under certain circumstances, can be qualified as an intervention in the internal affairs of the target State.
Keywords: Cyber Warfare, Non-intervention Principle, Internet, Stuxnet, Computer Network Attack, Cyberspace
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