The development of modern information and communications technologies (ICTs) has transformed human interaction, and that process is still far from complete. Nowhere is this more true than in the field of international security, where ICTs have empowered both states and non-state actors in ways that have collapsed the distinction between war and peace, while dramatically shortening the decision-making timescales of policymakers and military commanders. The new IISS Strategic Dossier, Evolution of the Cyber Domain: The Implications for National and Global Security, maps out and explains the developments and processes that gave rise to this state of affairs, and analyses their strategic significance. It covers the earliest efforts to develop computer networking and charts key technological, security, legal and policy developments up to the present day.

The Dossier examines:

  • The evolving geopolitical interplay between the major cyber powers: the United States, Russia and China
  • The implications of this interplay for balancing liberty and security
  • Intelligence collection
  • The development of national military cyber doctrines and capabilities, and their influence on the changing character of conflict
  • The international legal and policy challenges of managing this new domain

The Dossier is designed to serve as a foundational text on the evolving cyber domain for policymakers, opinion-formers, scholars and all those concerned with the key issues shaping the global security environment.

Nigel Inkster is the IISS Director of Future Conflict and Cyber Security. He served for 31 years in the British Secret Intelligence Service (commonly known as MI6). He had postings in Asia, Latin America and Europe and worked extensively on transnational security issues. He was on the Board of SIS for seven years, the last two as Assistant Chief and Director for Operations and Intelligence. He is the former Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Committee on Terrorism and a current member of the WEF Council on Cyber Security.

Dr Eneken Tikk-Ringas is the Consulting Senior Fellow for the Future Conflict and Cyber Security Programme. Before joining IISS, Eneken worked as legal adviser and the head of the legal and policy team at the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence in Tallinn, Estonia. She was one of the lead experts to analyze and write about cyber attacks against Estonia in 2007 and has since worked with many governments and international organizations on strategic cyber security matters. Prior to joining the NATO Centre she worked as an attorney in the field of information technology, focusing on EU regulations and standards for security of private and national information systems. She has consulted Estonian public authorities on legal and policy issues related to deploying and managing national information systems and service.

Dr Mika Kerttunen is the Director of Research at the Cyber Policy Institute in Estonia. He focuses on national cyber security strategies, military cyber doctrines in general and in particular on normative approaches and confidence building measures in cyberspace. He is an adjunct professor in military strategy at the Finnish National Defence University. 

The meeting was chaired by Mark Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of IISS–Americas. The meeting took place at IISS–Americas, 2121 K Street NW, Suite 801, Washington, DC 20037.

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Event details

Book Launch
Nigel Inkster, Director of Future Conflict and Cyber Security, IISS
Eneken Tikk-Ringas, Consulting Senior Fellow for Future Conflict and Cyber Security, IISS
Mika Kerttunen, Director of Research, Cyber Policy Institute
IISS–Americas, Washington DC
Tuesday 5 April, 10-11am EDT

Survival: Global Politics and Strategy

August–September 2016

This issue of Survival features Kristin Ven Bruusgaard on Russia's approach to strategic deterrence, James E. Doyle critiquing US plans to modernise the country's nuclear arsenal, and much more.