Table of Contents

Research Handbook on International Law and Cyberspace

Research Handbook on International Law and Cyberspace

Research Handbooks in International Law series

Edited by Nicholas Tsagourias and Russell Buchan

This timely Research Handbook contains an analysis of various legal questions concerning cyberspace and cyber activities and provides a critical account of their effectiveness. Expert contributors examine the application of fundamental international law principles to cyberspace such as sovereignty, jurisdiction, state responsibility, individual criminal responsibility, and intellectual property rights. In addition to this, they explore the application of international law rules to cyber terrorism, cyber espionage, cyber crime, cyber attacks and cyber war and discuss the cyber security policies of international and regional institutions.

Chapter 10: The notion of cyber operations

Paul Ducheine

Subjects: law - academic, internet and technology law, public international law, regulation and governance, terrorism and security law


The aim of this chapter is to elaborate on the notion of ‘cyber operations’ against the generic manner in which they are used by popular media as well as by academics. This chapter differentiates between actors and motives, covering operations conducted by both state and non-state entities. Special attention is paid to governmental cyber operations that are characterized by distinct roles and paradigms: governance, protection, law enforcement, intelligence and military operations. Despite similarities regarding means and methods used in various cyber operations, the critical test is the purpose of those launching such operations. For governmental actors, the purposes are vested in the aforementioned paradigms.

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