Need to define cyber sovereignty principles, say experts

New Delhi, Feb 23 (IANS) Cyber sovereignty principles need to be quickly defined to address not just national sovereignty and security concerns but also to balance conflicting state interests in cyberspace, cyber law experts said here.

Addressing a seminar recently on “Tallinn Manual 2.0” that was launched earlier this month, experts emphasised that there is a dire need for an “International Convention on Cyberlaw and Cybersecurity”.

Authored by 19 international law experts, the “Tallinn Manual 2.0” is the most comprehensive analysis of how existing international law applies to cyberspace.

“Tallinn Manual 2.0 seeks to provide a commendable starting point for a long journey on how principles of international law would apply to various facets of cyber operations in today’s world,” Pavan Duggal, one of the country’s top cyber law experts, told IANS on the sidelines of the event.

A sequel to its first version released in 2013, the new manual also offers insights about how cyber threats have evolved over the years and represents a new milestone in the evolving global cyberlaw jurisprudence.

“The cyber ecosystem, being a global paradigm, needs to be seen from a holistic perspective and not from a western centric vision only,” Duggal added.

According to Sanjay Bahl, Director General of the government’s Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), the digitisation of the country should not come at the cost of cyber attacks.

“With India gradually inching towards digitisation, the scope of cyber attacks, in absence of a concrete cyberlaw or its implementation, puts the country at peril,” Bahl told the gathering.

Duggal suggested that the process of framing an “International Convention on Cyberlaw and Cybersecurity” can begin by collating common minimum denominators of universally-accepted principles on the said subjects.

He added that cyber law, as a discipline, needed more thrust from all stakeholders to clarify its principles applicable to acts of state and non state actors in a widely unregulated ecosystem.

In the age of cybercrime as a service, cyberlaw has become “more relevant and topical,” Duggal noted.