Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Deterrence is Not a Credible Strategy for Cyberspace
Deterrence is Not a Credible Strategy for Cyberspace

Deterrence is Not a Credible Strategy for Cyberspace


U.S. national cybersecurity strategy, to be effective must align with the structural features and operational characteristics of the domain. Yet, this article contends that the current U.S. strategy of deterrence, coupled with the establishment of norms in cyberspace, does not satisfy this requirement. Alternatively, a strategy of cyber persistence is proposed, one that is enabled rather than crippled by the uniqueness of cyberspace. In an environment of constant contact, a strategy grounded in persistent engagement is more appropriate than one of operational restraint and reaction for shaping the parameters of acceptable behavior and sustaining and advancing U.S. national interests.

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