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Cyber War and Peace?

Posted: 09/07/10 06:00 AM

Does the world need a peace treaty for cyberspace?

Hamadoun Toure, the Secretary General of the UN’s International Telecommunications Union, thinks so.

He’s circulating a proposal that would require countries to prevent their infrastructure from being used in a cyber attack. And signatories would have to pledge not to start a cyber-war themselves.

But what would a full-fledged conflict online look like? To find out, we talk with Roger Cressey, a senior counter-terrorism official at the National Security Council under the Clinton and Bush administrations. And we hear from Stewart Baker,  assistant director at the Department of Homeland Security Department under Bush.

But many others believe the best way to think about online security isn’t really in terms of war and peace.  We might be reading the wrong Russian author.  How about crime and punishment?

Cadet Tera Corbari, center, participates in the 9th annual Cyber Defense Exercise last week. The exercise pitted West Point Cadets against teams from the four other service academies as they designed, built and configured a computer system. During the CDX the teams defended their networks against an outside attack from National Security Agency and Dept. of Defense personnel. The teams were evaluated on their ability to defend their networks and keep their systems on-line and available. (Photo by John Pellino/DOIM MMB)

Comments | Filed Under: cyberwar Roger Cressey Stweart Baker UN

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What will we do with all this "white space"?

09/26/10 11:15 AM

There’s a vote coming up this week in Washington that will have a big impact on how you use the internet, what’s available to you, how much faster you’ll be able to get things online. On Thursday, the FCC is expected to open up unused parts of the broadcast spectrum, a lot of people call it “white space”. This is space that was positioned to be something of a buffer between television stations but such padding is proving less essential since the conversion to digital TV.

On today’s show, we talk to Glenn Fleishman from Wi-Fi Networking News and The Economist about how the spectrum works and what kind of new space we’re talking about. We also check in with Tim Wu from Columbia Law School about the companies that will look to use the space and what it all might mean for you and me as internet consumers.

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