Q3/2019 - Mircosoft, Cyber Peace Institute (CPI)

Geneva, 25 September 2019

On 25 September 2019, a Cyber Peace Institute (CPI) was established in Geneva[1]. The CPI emerged from a proposal made by Microsoft in 2016 for drafting a new “Digital Geneva Convention”. Back then, the proposal was not received with unanimous approval. Microsoft, nevertheless, continued to develop the underlying idea. In 2018, a “Tech Accord” was issued for signature, which in the meantime has been signed by more than 100 enterprises[2]. At the same time, Microsoft launched a Digital Peace Initiative, which gathered more than 150,000 signatures[3]. The CPI is the next module in Microsoft's commitment to greater security and stability in cyberspace.

The mandate of the new institute is limited to three core areas: assistance, accountability, advancement. First and foremost, the CPI shall help victims of cyber attacks to protect themselves against attacks and to remedy any damage they have suffered, if possible. Furthermore, the institute shall help to find anonymous attackers, to unmask them and to hold them accountable, i.e. the institute shall make a contribution to the politically controversial issue of "attribution" without interfering with the sovereignty of states. Finally, it shall also help to strengthen the rule of law in cyberspace as a whole, to ensure greater transparency and to disseminate knowledge people should have about the dangers and possibilities of cyberspace. The mandate in the three core areas is described as follows:

  • Assistance: Coordinating recovery efforts for the most vulnerable victims of cyber-attacks and assisting vulnerable communities and organisations to increase their resilience to attacks
  • Accountability: Facilitating the collective analysis research and investigation of cyber attacks, also by assessing the harm they cause, and creating greater transparency for the problem in order to provide better information thanks to a better database
  • Advancement: Promoting positive and responsible behaviour in cyberspace by reinforcing and improving compliance with international law and norms

The first President of the Digital Peace Institute became Marietje Schaake, former Member of European Parliament representing the Netherlands. In her role as MEP, Schaake has earned herself a widely respected reputation as an Internet expert. She was Commissioner in the Global Commission on Stability in Cyberspace (GCSC) and regularly attended the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) organised by UNO. After she had left the European Parliament in May 2019, Marietje Schaake moved on to Stanford Cyber Policy Center and to the Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence of Stanford University.

  • CEO of the new institute was appointed Stéphane Duguin from France. Duguin has long years of experience in the European Union and EUROPOL.
  • An Executive Board of eight assumes the function of a Supervisory Board. Members of the Board include Brad Smith, President of Microsoft, and Khoo Boon Hui, former President of Interpol.
  • A 14-person Advisory Council will counsel the new institute. The members of the Advisory Council include Prof. Joe Nye, JFK School of Government of Harvard University and member of the Global Commission on Stability in Cyberspace (GCSC) and Jamie Shea, former spokesman of NATO[4].

The new Digital Peace Institute is based in Geneva. It will initially be financed with five million US dollars each by the three founding members Hewlett Foundation, Mastercard and Microsoft. Facebook and the Ford Foundation are also major sponsors. Another 14 companies and platforms, including the Bertelsmann Stiftung, Packet Clearing House and the Global Cyber Alliance, are partners of the institute. Further partners are being sought. The final size of the institute has not yet been determined. Initially, four additional positions are being advertised for the management of the institute (Chief Communications Officer, Chief of Staff, Chief Operations Officer and Chief Technology Officer). You can also apply to the CPI as a volunteer.

Mehr zum Thema
  1. [1] CyberPeace Institute to Support Victims Harmed by Escalating Conflicts in Cyberspace, Genf, 25. September 2019, in: https://cyberpeaceinstitute.org/
  2. [4] Members of the CyberPeace Institute's Executive Board include: Alejandro Becerra Gonzalez, Global Information Security Director, Telefonica, Khoo Boon Hui, Former President, Interpol, Merle Maigre, Executive Vice President for Government Relations at CybExer Technologies, Alexander Niejelow, Senior Vice President, Cybersecurity Coordination & Advocacy, Mastercard, Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO of New America, Brad Smith, President, Microsoft, Eli Sugarman, Program Officer, Cyber Initiative, Hewlett Foundation, Martin Vetterli, President, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, EPFL; The CyberPeace Institute's Advisory Board includes: Sunil Abraham, Executive Director, Centre for Internet and Society, Cheryl Carolus, co-founder of Peotona Capital, Ron Deibert, Director, The Citizen Lab, Niva Elkin-Koren, founding Director, Haifa Center for Law and Technology; Co-Director, Center for Cyber, Law and Policy, Jen Ellis, Vice-President Community and Public Affairs, Rapid7, Vasu Gounden, Executive Director of the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes, Fergus Hanson, Director of International Cyber Policy Centre, Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Chung Min Lee, Chairman of the Advisory Council of the International Institute for Strategic Studies, Joseph S. Nye Jr., University Distinguished Service Professor, Emeritus and former Dean of the Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, Luisa Parraguez, Global Affairs and International Security Professor, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Jamie Shea, Professor of strategy and security, University of Exeter, Michael Schmitt, Professor of International Law, University of Exeter, Danny Sriskandarajah, Chief Executive Officer, OXFAM GB, Luis Videgaray Caso, Senior Lecturer at MIT and former Mexican Secretary of Foreign Affairs, in https://cyberpeaceinstitute.org/