O’Loughlin at GCHQ - Cyber Security: Lacunae of Strategy

On 31 January 2012 a workshop will be held at King’s College London for GCHQ on the theme, ‘Cyber Security: Lacunae of Strategy’. The UK’s cyber security strategy seems to build upon ideas evident in Foreign Secretary William Hague’s recent speeches. In November 2011 he stated:

Our vision is for the UK in 2015 to derive huge economic and social value from a vibrant, resilient and secure cyberspace, where our actions, guided by our core values of liberty, fairness, transparency and the rule of law, enhance prosperity, national security and a strong society.

(UK Cyber Security Strategy: Protecting and Promoting the UK in a Digital World)

This suggests the trade-offs any national cybersecurity strategy faces, not least how security policy should not impinge upon democracy, liberty or other ‘core values’. Meanwhile there is a lack of conceptual clarity, with cyber war, crime and security often being used interchangeably, and a recurring difficulty among policymakers of how to conceive of ‘cyberspace’ given its social and technical character.

Ben O’Loughlin and Andrew Hoskins will talk about how strategy can be organized and communicated in these conditions, conditions they have theorized as ‘diffused war’. Other speakers include Thomas Rid, Richard Clayton and Tim Jordan.