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Chinese Cyber Diplomacy In A New Era Of Uncertainty

by Adam Segalvia Aegis Paper Series
Friday, June 2, 2017

After initially taking a relatively defensive, reactive position on the global governance of cyberspace, China under President Xi Jinping has adopted a more activist cyber diplomacy. This foreign policy has three primary goals: limit the threat that the internet and the flow of information may pose to domestic stability and regime legitimacy; shape cyberspace to extend Beijing’s political, military, and economic influence; and counter US advantages in cyberspace and increase China’s room of maneuver. Measured against its objectives, China’s diplomacy would appear relatively successful. The greatest uncertainty for Beijing moving forward is the state of US-China relations.

The Encryption Debate In Europe

by Daniel Seversonvia Aegis Paper Series
Monday, March 20, 2017

The going dark debate has spread to Europe. The commercial growth of encryption and a wave of terrorist attacks have spurred new laws to detect and disrupt terrorism. This article reviews the most recent encryption-related legislation in France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Hungary, and Poland. The article discusses the legislative debates, as well as aims to achieve coordination at the EU level. Although Europe has so far disavowed banning encryption or mandating pre-installed backdoors, several countries have enacted statutes authorizing compelled decryption. The article concludes by briefly comparing the European approach to the American legal regime.

The Elephant in the Room: Addressing Child Exploitation and Going Dark

by Susan Hennesseyvia Aegis Paper Series
Friday, January 27, 2017

The public debate over encryption and Going Dark insufficiently addresses the issue of child sexual exploitation. This article describes the particular impacts of Going Dark on the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of child sexual abuse crimes. It reviews the available statistics related to quantifying the scope of the problem and the ways in which these crimes have become easier to commit and more difficult to detect. It concludes that lawful hacking, wherein the government exploits existing software vulnerabilities to circumvent security, is a necessary element of a Going Dark solution. To that end, the article explores the legal and policy questions that must be addressed in order to develop a practical and realistic response.

International Spillover Effects

by Jennifer Daskalvia Aegis Paper Series
Monday, December 12, 2016

As the encryption debate continues, proponents on both sides decry the negative international side effects of the policies they oppose.  This essay analyzes the claims, examining the potential effects of the specific policies being pursued.  It ultimately concludes that even the “no new regulation” approach has potentially significant spillover effects.  These effects are bidirectional and dynamic: US policies and practices have a spillover effect internationally; but the policies and practices of foreign actors also influence the effectiveness of any decryption policy, and thus the scope and distribution of any such effect.  This highlights the need for centralized, executive-level review of sought-after decryption orders, so as to better account for the potential effects.

China, Encryption Policy, and International Influence

by Adam Segalvia Aegis Paper Series
Monday, November 28, 2016

It is difficult to disentangle the influence of U.S. encryption policy on the development of Chinese regulations and laws. Independent of what happens in Washington, Beijing has a long history of using encryption policy to foster national and domestic security as well as to promote economic growth and indigenous innovation. 

The International Legal Dynamics Of Encryption

by Ashley Deeksvia Aegis Paper Series
Tuesday, October 11, 2016

To date there has been little international coordinated action to address encryption, though interest is growing. This paper looks at encryption through five different international lenses: human rights, law enforcement, intelligence, economics, and export controls. 

Decryption Mandates And Global Internet Freedom

by Adam I. Kleinvia Aegis Paper Series
Monday, September 26, 2016

The potential international effects of a domestic decryption mandate have been a significant factor in the debate over U.S. encryption policy.  Some fear that a U.S. decryption mandate would empower authoritarian regimes and would clash with the United States’ international Internet-freedom agenda.

Attribution of Malicious Cyber Incidents: From Soup to Nuts

by Herbert Linvia Aegis Paper Series
Monday, September 19, 2016

Attribution of malicious cyber activities is a deep issue about which confusion and disquiet can be found in abundance. Attribution has many aspects—technical, political, legal, policy, and so on. This paper distinguishes between attribution of malicious cyber activity to a machine, to a specific human being pressing the keys that initiate that activity, and to a party that is deemed ultimately responsible for that activity.

Go Big, Go Global: Subject the NSA ’s Overseas Programs to Judicial Review

by Timothy Edgarvia Aegis Paper Series
Thursday, June 30, 2016

Congress should use the debate over section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to think big.  Section 702 brings some NSA programs directed at foreign targets under judicial review, showing such review is feasible even for complex programs of transnational surveillance.

Hacking Back Without Cracking Up

by Jeremy Rabkin, Ariel Rabkinvia Aegis Paper Series
Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Malicious hackers, often under the protection of hostile foreign states, have engaged in massive data theft from U.S. business firms and private institutions.  Intelligence agencies predict the problem will get worse. 

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Aegis explores legal and policy issues at the intersection of technology and national security.  Published in partnership with the Lawfare Blog, it features long-form essays of the Hoover Institution National Security, Technology and Law Working Group (the Aegis Paper Series), examines major new books in the field, and carries podcasts and videos or the working group’s events in Washington and Stanford.