Ben Buchanan

Biography: 

Ben Buchanan is a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University’s Cybersecurity Project, where he conducts research on the intersection of cybersecurity and statecraft. His first book, The Cybersecurity Dilemma: Hacking, Trust and Fear Between Nations, was published by Oxford University Press in 2017. He has also written on attributing cyberattacks, deterrence in cyber operations, cryptography, election cybersecurity, and machine learning. He received his PhD in war studies from King’s College London, where he was a Marshall Scholar, and earned master's and undergraduate degrees from Georgetown University.

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Analysis and Commentary

Nobody But Us: The Rise And Fall Of The Golden Age Of Signals Intelligence

by Ben Buchananvia Lawfare
Thursday, September 7, 2017

Traditionally, signals intelligence is neatly bifurcated into offense and defense: intercept adversaries’ communication technology and protect one’s own. In the modern era, however, there is great convergence in the technologies used by friendly nations and by hostile ones. I’ve tried to tackle some of this in a new paper, “Nobody But Us: The Rise and Fall of the Golden Age of Signals Intelligence.” It’s published as part of the Hoover Institution's Aegis Paper Series.

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

Nobody But Us

by Ben Buchananvia Hoover Institution
Wednesday, August 30, 2017

This paper examines how the NOBUS approach works, its limits, and the challenging matter of what comes next. Traditionally, signals intelligence is neatly bifurcated into offense and defense: intercept adversaries’ communication technology and protect one’s own. In the modern era, however, there is great convergence in the technologies used by friendly nations and by hostile ones. Signals intelligence agencies find themselves penetrating the technologies they also at times must protect. To ease this tension, the United States and its partners have relied on an approach sometimes called Nobody But Us, or NOBUS: target communications mechanisms using unique methods accessible only to the United States.