Cyberspace is a global common. Explain. Also discuss the challenges to Cyberspace as a global common. (150 words)
Cyberspace and global common
Cyberspace spans the entire globe almost seamlessly.
- The national assets have to be part of the cyberspace, the global commons, to derive benefits of connectivity-global e-commerce, email, funds transfer, stock trading, and other relations for business and trade; social networking that is spawning global communities, and changing the way people keep in touch with their families and friends.
- Cyberspace is indeed a global common, albeit of a new kind, since it is man-made.
- It facilitates the transfer of data and information rather than people, vessels, and goods; it is largely owned by the private sector.
- But it’s a national asset too, since it enables a host of business and government services to citizens; critical infrastructure depends on it for its efficient operations.
- In fact, economies of advanced nations almost entirely depend upon it.
- The attacks on these systems can come from anywhere in the world, because cyberspace is borderless.
- That’s what makes cyberspace a unique global common, with every piece belonging to some company, organization, or individual as part of a national ICT asset.
Challenges to Cyberspace as a global common
- Recent cyber-attacks by organized criminals, non-state actors, and even nation-states have underlined the threat scenario.
- Sensitive country information including defence secrets, embassies’ correspondence; intellectual property comprising R&D of several companies based on years of efforts worth billions of dollars; penetration of critical infrastructures; use of cyberspace by terrorists, by nation-states through non-state actors have raised the spectre of a silent net-centric war-in what is known as cyber warfare.
- Cyberspace has emerged as the new domain-beyond land, sea, air and space-that has to be factored by nations in their national defence strategies and plans. Cyberspace commons, therefore must have rules of the road.
- Cyberspace is anarchic today since there is no formal governance regime. Market based governance that includes people, groups, and governments around the world has produced a flexible and effective global network of networks. But its regulation is complicated by several features.
- Cyberspace is asymmetric, and offense dominant, provides anonymity because of difficulties in attribution-with implications for bringing criminals to justice and for deterrence and reprisal in the battle space.
- Silent, undetected attacks by non-state actors-criminals and terrorists-and by nation-states for cyber espionage, and disruption of critical infrastructures to cripple economies and spread disorder-are a reality.
Since the cyberattacks respect no borders, it is thus essential to bring the international community together to ensure peace and security in the digital space. In such a scenario, shared rules and norms become imperative.
Courses we offer
UPSC Civil Services Coaching ( We are the best top rated IAS Academy in Vijayawada and Andhra Pradesh by Times of India Excellence award)
Degree with IAS (BA and BSc plus UPSC Coaching)
Inter with IAS (Sarat Chandra Junior College provides intermediate plus UPSC Coaching with HEC, MEC, CEC along with CLAT, IIT HSEE, IPMAT)