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[ISN] NATO cyberwar directive declares hackers military targets


March 19, 2013

As the United States and its adversaries move from using missiles to malware on its targets, a group of specialists have drafted preliminary guidelines for the worldâs ramped-up cyberwars.

The rule book published this week, The Tallinn Manual on International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare, was curated by NATOâs Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence and calls upon two dozen experts from around the world to help lay the groundwork for cyberwar guidelines as attacks aimed at computer grids, networks and systems increasingly become the target of foreign agents.

Michael Schmitt, a professor with the US Naval War College and the editor of the manual, told the Associated Press before publication that the guidelines come at a time when few laws formally exist governing the use of so-called cyberweapons. Just like bombs and missiles, hackers and state-sponsored parties can use malicious code to wipe out entire databases, break down machinery and otherwise render enter infrastructures useless.

"Everyone was seeing the Internet as the 'Wild, Wild, West,'" Schmitt told the AP. "What they had forgotten is that international law applies to cyberweapons like it applies to any other weapons."


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