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A model for characterizing cyberpower

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Publication date2015
Host publicationCritical Infrastructure Protection
Place of PublicationUSA
PublisherSpringer
Pages3-16
Number of pages14
Volume9
ISBN (Electronic)9783319265674
ISBN (Print)9783319265667
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper builds on previous work describing the nature of cyberspace by further developing a model in which the domain can be divided into distinct layers, each with their own unique characteristics. Combining this with the concept of Near, Mid and Far space, which adds a notion
of distance, a three dimensional view of cyberspace is proposed through which the projection of cyberpower can be modelled. The concept of cyberpower is examined from the perspective of national security and a range of prominent cyber attacks are qualitatively assessed and compared within the context of this model using six attributes measuring the sophistication of the attack. From this initial assessment it can be seen that whereas targeting of individuals through the medium of cyberspace can be relatively simple in technological terms, the ability to gain information about the infrastructure or to be able to cause physical damage via cyberspace is an increasingly complex task, which may currently only be within the capabilities of nation states. The paper concludes with proposals for further research to develop this work to produce a measurable, quantitative model for cyberpower.