Putin is disrupting the room for Biden to negotiate on ransomware


at the end In June, just before the White House scrambled to respond to another ransomware attack from Russia, Moscow submitted a New international cyber treaty In the United Nations.Over the years, Moscow has been strengthening its control of the domestic Internet, and Recently pushed For one Sovereign internetAlthough the Russian government’s Internet strategy and policies are often misunderstood in the West-based on the false assumption that Putin’s hands promote everything in Russia-this concern for national dominance is still very clear. But as the Biden administration took action to respond to the growing threat of ransomware from Russian cyber crooks, the new treaty highlights how reluctant the Putin regime is to cooperate.

The crux of the 69-page document is not shocking: Putin’s regime is continuing to fight for a more closed and state-controlled Internet.However, the new significance is that it follows aisle A new united nations Network protocol Moscow (and Beijing and other authoritarian governments) launched in December 2019 surging Telephone for”Cyber ​​sovereignty”And the Trump administration’s destroy Of U.S. cyber diplomats receive broad support from long-term supporters of opening up the global Internet.Subsequently, a UN committee was established to review a new cyber treaty — aimed at replace This Budapest Convention Cybercrime that Moscow has long opposed.

The Russian treaty is called the “Convention on Combating the Use of Information and Communication Technologies for Criminal Purposes.” It is about cybercrime in name, but the term “cybercrime” has a very different meaning for Putin’s regime from Washington or Berlin. In the West, “information security” and “network security” are used interchangeably, and usually refer to the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of systems, networks, and data. For the Russian government, information security More broadly, the security of Putin’s regime, the state’s control of information flow, and the “stability” of Russian society are all included in a single concept. When dozens of countries support Russia’s call for information security, it constitutes a push for stricter national censorship and Internet control worldwide.

The definition of crime is also problematic.For a regime that uses all kinds of violence against those who challenge or resist it-including murder, Kidnapping, Police brutality, and Go to jail-“Cybercrime” is just any cyber behavior that intimidates the Kremlin or threatens Putin’s power.Russia has enacted many laws Review Technology companies and punish Individuals share what it considers to be “false information.” The treaty’s anti-cybercrime language expands Moscow’s efforts to provide more top cover for Internet repression. Considering the country’s long-term use of terms such as “counter-terrorism” and “counter-extremism”, the mention of “terrorism” belongs to the same category. suppress objection. The treaty contains an extremely broad definition of terrorism, including illegal acts motivated by political or ideological “hate”, which provides an excuse for suppressing the opposition.

The treaty also wields many other familiar rhetorical tools of the Russian regime: referring to national sovereignty and non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, Putin continuously pressure-Usually out of malicious intent-is equally important to Russia’s security; vague definition of computer operations that affect “information security”; expanded surveillance, requiring companies to archive user data and intercept online traffic; and cynicism about human rights.

Russia’s feat at the United Nations in December 2019 may bring stronger support for the new treaty than in other cases; countries voted to set up a new committee to weigh cyber treaties, and Moscow has now submitted such a document. Whether the many supporters of the previous agreement will support it is an open question.Whether Biden can do it remains to be seen marshal Diplomatic resources to successfully fight it.


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