Mika Kerttunen

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The quest for public international order in cyberspace. The role of Europe

This intervention asks of the role of Europe in shaping, maintaining and constructing public international order in cyberspace. It proposes a-back-to-the-basics approach with five parallel lines of political, normative and practical action of distinct European character.

The international debate and the UN level negotiations have accepted the assumption that the development and use of ICTs is harmful. The question how international law can be applied in cyberspace has been primarily in the context of International Humanitarian Law, self-defence and countermeasures. National political differences have the recent years culminated in the principal question of international obligations limiting sovereignty.

The heavy emphasis on dangerous nature of ICTs, the Law of Armed Conflict and countermeasures, however, do not correspond to the interests and experience of Europe.

European global cybersecurity policy should build on, demonstrate and strengthen our unique and credible value base. To strengthen and enhance transatlantic relations the EU and European governments should take the following coordinated lines of action:

- Incorporate to the international peace and security discourse a positive agenda and approach that makes maximum use of the customary international law of non-intervention and due diligence;
- Based on the EU views on Internet governance, promote cyberspace governance as a combination of regulatory, architectural, infrastructural and standardization measures;
- Emphasize the European experience and goals with personal data protection and promote the protection of all data as an issue of international peace, security and stability discourse;
- Support constructive and cooperative private sector initiatives; and
- Cultivate regional and global capacity-building that strengthens the rule of law and raises technical security – the latter not only to reduce the systemic vulnerabilities but also perceived insecurity.

Dr. Mika Kerttunen



D.Soc.Sc. (Pol.), LTC (ret. FI A) Mika Kerttunen is Founder, and Director of Studies, of the Cyber Policy Institute (Tartu, Estonia). He is a graduate of the Finnish Military Academy and General Staff Officer Course as well as the Royal Norwegian Command and Staff College. Kerttunen studied world politics at the University of Helsinki and analyzed in his 2009 dissertation Indian foreign and nuclear policy. After his military service he has been focusing on international cyber diplomacy, cyber norms development, and analyzed the development of national cyber security strategies and military cyber doctrines. Mika Kerttunen served as advisor to the Finnish expert at the UN Group of Governmental Experts on Developments in the Field of Information and Telecommunications in the Context of International Security (2016-2017). He is Visiting Faculty Member at the University of Tartu Law School and Senior Advisor to ICT for Peace Foundation.

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