The United States’ national security depends on a secure, reliable and resilient cyberspace. The inclusion of digital systems into every aspect of US national security has been underway since World War II and has increased with the proliferation of Internet enabled devices. There is an increasing need to develop a robust deterrence framework within which the US and its allies can dissuade would be adversaries from engaging in various cyber activities. Yet despite a desire to deter adversaries, the problems associated with dissuasion remain complex, multifaceted, poorly understood and imprecisely specified.
Challenges including, credibility, attribution, escalation and conflict management to name but a few remain ever present and challenge the US in its efforts to foster security in cyberspace. These challenges need to be addressed in a deliberate and multidisciplinary approach that combines political and technical realities to provide a robust set of policy options to decision makers.
The Cyber Deterrence Problem brings together a multi-disciplinary team of scholars from multiple institutions with expertise in computer science, deterrence theory, cognitive psychology, intelligence studies, and conflict management to analyze and develop a robust assessment of the necessary requirements and attributes for achieving deterrence in cyberspace. Beyond simply addressing the base challenges associated with deterrence many of the chapters also propose strategies and tactics to enhance deterrence in cyberspace and emphasize conceptualizing how the US deters adversaries.
1. Introduction: The Cyber Deterrence Problem, Aaron Brantly
2. The Limits of Deterrence and the Need for Persistence, Michael P. Fischerkeller,
Richard J. Harknett, Jelena Vićić
3. Cyber Escalation and Deterrence, Andrew Owsiak
4. Cyber Deterrence and Critical Infrastructure, Jacquelyn Schneider
5. Deterrence is about Shaping an Adversary, Eric Jardine
6. The Credibility of Cyber Deterrence Commitments: The Role and Nature of Public
Support for Retaliation, Jeffery Berejikian and Samuel Wallace Marcott
7. A Micro-Deterrence Approach to Cyber Defense, Damien Van Puyvelde
8. Deterring Malicious Cyber Activity Through Norms and Governance, Aislinn McCann
9. Back to Reality: Cross Domain Deterrence and Cyberspace, Aaron Brantly
Aaron F. Brantly is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Virginia Tech.
This fresh take on cyber deterrence makes an impressive step-forward in considering the limits and possibilities of deterrence in the digital age. Deterrence as a strategy persists, coming to terms with the realities of the challenge in implementing deterrence is a critical task and this volume is a must read for both scholars and practitioners in the field.