Q2/2019 - NATO
On 23 May 2019, the second NATO Cyber Defence Pledge Conference took place in London. The conference series organised by NATO is primarily intended to raise awareness of the new threats a cyber war would include and to help NATO countries optimise their national cyber defence strategy. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in London that "cyber" was now one of the NATO Alliance's priorities. NATO countries had to recognise the threat potential of cyber attacks and the need to invest in enhanced cyber defence. The new cyber dimension had fundamentally changed the "nature of warfare" and was accompanied by incalculable threats.
One of the issues under consideration was how to develop an effective deterrence strategy in cyberspace. Stoltenberg made it very clearly that potential attackers must be well aware that NATO was not limited to respond in cyberspace when it was attacked in cyberspace, but would draw on NATO's broad range of capabilities. Such an "asymmetric response" would thus include the use of traditional weapons systems. Stoltenberg referred to NATO's decision that cyber attacks could also be regarded as an "Article 5 case". Article 5 of the NATO Treaty contains the obligation of mutual assistance, according to which an attack against one NATO country is treated as an attack against all NATO countries. As to the internationally controversial issue of attribution, Stoltenberg referred to the foiled Russian cyber attacks on the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague and the fight against ISIS in the Middle East, which clearly proved that considerable progress has been made in this respect.
Stoltenberg pointed out that it was necessary to recruit specialised personnel for NATO cyber activities and promoted close cooperation with the private sector. With a view to the cyber security negotiations starting at the UN in New York in September 2019, Stoltenberg advocated a "norms-based, predictable and secure cyberspace".