UN Group Releases Report on the International Security of Information and Communications Technologies

The 2015 Group of Governmental Experts on Developments in the Field of Information and Telecommunications in the Context of International Security released its report containing recommendations to address threats that stem from the use of information and communications technologies (“ICTs”) by both states and non-states.  The group was composed of governmental experts from the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Russia, China, Estonia, France, Belarus, Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Israel, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, South Korea, and Spain.  The report contained sections explaining threats to ICTs, norms to influence state behavior, confidence-building measures, international cooperation for capacity-building, and the applicability of international law to the use of ICTs.

Highlights from the report include (all of the proposed norms are voluntary and non-binding):

  • The responsibility to secure ICTs rest largely on States, and each state has jurisdiction over the ICT infrastructure located within its territory.
  • States should respond to requests by other states to mitigate malicious ICT activity aimed at another’s critical infrastructure being conducted within its territory.
  • States should cooperate with each other on prosecuting terrorist and criminal use of ICTs.
  • States should encourage reporting and share information on known ICT vulnerabilities and appropriate remedies.
  • Creating bilateral, multilateral, and regional partnerships to increase transparency and cooperation with an aim to build confidence and trust between nations.
  • Creating a directory of contacts at the policy and technical levels within governments to increase communications between nations to address ICT incidents
  • Strengthening mechanisms by which agencies from different nations can cooperate to address ICT incidents.
  • Developed states should provide developing states with assistance and training to develop countries to improve security of the ICTs.
  • International law, in Particular the Charter of the United Nations, applies to the use of ICTs.

The report concludes by emphasizing the role of the United Nations in promoting dialogue and developing common understandings of the application of international law to the use of ICTs.  Further, the group acknowledged that although states have the primary responsibility to secure ICTs, a combined effort between states, the private sector, academia, and civil society organizations will greatly benefit the international effort.

The full report can be found here.

 

 

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One Response to “UN Group Releases Report on the International Security of Information and Communications Technologies”

  1. […] to developing nations to improve their cybersecurity capabilities. (Interestingly enough, this very same suggestion was made by a UN group in the context of the cybersecurity of information and communications technologies […]

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Authors

Untitled Document
Professor William Snyder

Professor William C. Snyderis a member of the faculty of the Institute for National Security and Counter-terrorism at Syracuse University after fifteen years with the United States Department of Justice.

Ryan D. White

Ryan D. WhiteRyan is currently a third year law student at Syracuse University College of Law, and is also pursuing a Master of Public Administration degree from Syracuse’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. Ryan spent time with Homeland Security Investigations while pursuing his undergraduate degree at Wesleyan University, and spent his first summer of law school as clerk for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of New York. He is a member of Syracuse Law Review, the Journal on Terrorism and Security Analysis, and participates in the Veteran’s Legal Clinic. Full biography

Shelby E. Mann

Ryan D. WhiteShelby is a second year law student at the Syracuse University College of Law. She is the 2018-9 Editor in Chief of the Syracuse Law Review, as well as a member of the Journal on Terrorism and Security Analysis, and the senior editor for the Syrian Accountability Project. During her final year at the University of Missouri, she served as a full-time news producer for ABC 17 News. Shelby spent her first summer of law school at the Shelby County District Attorney General's Office in Memphis, Tenn., in the Public Corruption and Economic Crimes Unit. Full biography

Christopher w. FolkChristopher W. Folk

is a 2017 graduate of SU College of Law. A non-traditional student, Christopher returned to academia after spending nearly twenty years in the high tech industry. Christopher served in the Marine Corps, graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. In Applied Economics and Business Management, attended Northeastern University’s High-Tech MBA Program and received a M.S. In Computer Information Systems. Christopher previously worked in Software Engineering. Christopher is currently serving his second term as Town Justice for the Town of Waterloo. Christopher externed with a Cybersecurity firm in the Washington, D.C. area between his first and second year at SU College of Law. Full biography

Anna Maria Castillo

Anna Maria Castillois 2016 graduate of Syracuse College of Law. She also holds a Master of Arts in International Relations from Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. She has interned at a London-based think-tank that specializes in transnational terrorism and global security and at the legal department of a defense contractor. She served as an executive editor in the Syracuse Law Review. Full biography

Jennifer A. CamilloJennifer A. Camillo

is a 2015 graduate of Syracuse College of Law and is a prosecutor. She has served as a law clerk in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York and the Cayuga County District Attorney’s Office and as an extern in the Oneida County District Attorney’s Office. She was a member of the Syracuse National Trial Team and was awarded the Tiffany Cup by the New York Bar Association for her trial advocacy achievements.

Tara J. PistoreseTara J. Pistorese

holds Juris Doctor and Masters of Public Administration degrees from Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and its College of Law. She wrote for this blog when a student. She is now a member of the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Corps.

Benjamin Zaiser

is both a scholar and a Federal Agent of the Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany. (Opinions expressed here are his own and not any part of official duty.) Full biography

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