Citizen Lab Director Ron Deibert has published a new article titled “The Growing Dark Side of Cyberspace ( . . . and What To Do About It)” in the Penn State Journal of Law & International Affairs, Volume 1, Issue 2, November 2012.

An excerpt of the article is below.

“Cyberspace—the global environment of digital communications—surrounds and embodies us entirely, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We are always on, always connected: emailing, texting, searching, networking, and sharing are all now as commonplace as eating, breathing, and sleeping. With the emerging “Internet of things,” devices interact online independent of our direct control: our fridges, pacemakers, and automobiles, alive and networking with each other. Governments around the world have seen these technologies as the recipe for social empowerment and development. Billions have been spent on wiring communities even in the most isolated areas, under the assumption that access to knowledge and networking are the keys to economic growth. Numerous success stories provide ample evidence for these assumptions, from crowd-sourcing disaster and humanitarian relief operations to farmers using mobile apps to access real-time data on markets. But there is a dark side to cyberspace—hidden contests and malicious threats—that is growing like a disease from the inside-out. This disease has many symptoms, and is being reinforced by a multiplicity of disparate but mutually reinforcing causes. Some of these driving forces are unintended byproducts of the new digital universe into which we have thrust ourselves with blind acceptance; others are more sinister and represent deliberate manipulations of the new opportunities for exploitation that have been created. I outline six of these driving forces below.”

Click here to read the article.