Defining Self-Defense for the Private Sector in Cyberspace

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It is the United States’ stated policy to employ an “active cyberdefense” capability to defend U.S. military networks and systems and to conduct “full-spectrum military cyberspace operations” when directed to assist in that defense. Active cyberdefense is a term of art widely understood to include offensive actions in cyberspace taken with defensive purposes in mind. Such actions are tactical operations with the limited goal of mitigating an immediate hostile act. In addition, U.S. Cyber Command, the U.S. military’s combatant command tasked with cyberoperations, is reportedly planning to create “national mission forces” that would protect the computer systems undergirding “electrical grids, […]

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