SEST-672 National Cyber Security Strategy and Policy
Fall for 2017-2018
Andres, Richard
Over the last few years, states have regularly employed their cyber capabilities against
each other. These uses have covered a spectrum from espionage to destruction of physical
infrastructure. Unlike espionage, economics or arms, however, there is little agreement
about how cyber conflict does or should work. Politicians rush to fund new cyber tools
but seldom understand how they will function once operational. Militaries and
intelligence agencies employ emerging capabilities against their opponents but do not
appear to have a clear idea about where this competition will lead. US Directors of
National Intelligence and Secretaries of Defense have repeatedly warned that cyber war is
one of the greatest threats to US and global security but consistently fail to provide
answers about how to defend against the scenarios they describe. Everyone is worried but
no one seems to understand how cyber conflict works within the larger context of
international relations and national strategy. Nevertheless, like the proverbial magician’s
apprentice, they continue to experiment with the new capabilities.
This course examines the nature of cyber conflict. It looks at the specific ways states are
attempting to use cyber capabilities as tools of policy and the strategies underlying those
approaches. It seeks to explain how these emerging stratagems are beginning to work
with existing tools of espionage and warfare to reshape international security. After
taking this class you should have a working understanding of the dynamics of cyber
conflict as instruments of foreign policy. Beyond what you learn about substantive issues,
this seminar will also help you to develop methodological skills for evaluating difficult to
access information through source triangulation, competitive hypotheses building and
related techniques.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None
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