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Rules of Engagement For Cyberwars See Slow Progress

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Rules of cyberwar engagement are lagging behind world powers' development of their cyberwarfare capabilities. Sources say U.S. officials have held preliminary dialogues with their Russian equivalents on the use of cyberweapons, as well as with the Chinese, but analysts say little progress has been made so far. Meanwhile, cyberwarfare funding continues to rise sharply, as does the potential of cyberarms to wreak havoc with both civilian and military networks.

International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Secretary-General Hamadoun Toure says the emergence of the Stuxnet computer worm "should serve as a wake-up call for all nations regarding the threats we face." Toure is seeking a code of conduct that prohibits behavior opposed by all countries, such as data theft and network disablement.

The United States is in favor of an ITU plan that imposes the burden of probing cyberattacks on the nations where those attacks came from, while it also supports a Russian effort urging the development of a cyberarms limitation treaty by a United Nations panel. However, the panel is not slated to convene for two years, and the U.S. State Department has yet to appoint a senior official to guide international initiatives on such issues.

From The Financial Times
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