Cyberweapons Could Promote Peace



It’s easy to worry about cyberwarfare. It’s believed that cyberwarfare is cheap and makes wars easier to start, but not everyone agrees. Some even believe that cyberweapons could be used to promote peace.

One such person is Adam Liff, a Princeton doctoral candidate who recently wrote an article in the Journal of Strategic Studies in which he points out that to assume that cyberwarfare would result in more conflict is short-sighted. Liff points out that instead of basing our idea of cyberwarfare on scenarios from films, we should remember that those who would actually be deploying cyberweapons have real agendas and interests to consider – and the real cost. In fact, despite the fear mongering we are assaulted with every day over the idea of cyberwarfare, Liff is even able to give many scenarios as to how cyberweapons could promote world peace.

Debunking the Myths of Cyberwarfare

Liff could be onto something with his article. There is the idea that developing cyberweapons is cheap and easily available, that any geek in a basement could cripple the world with an afternoon of programming. The truth is, developing advanced cyberweapons takes resources and a bit more time.

Even if a country had to develop such cyberweapons, would they still choose to attack? There’s no way a country could know what the consequences of a cyberattack would be. They wouldn’t know if it would be successful or lead to a counterattack with more conventional weapons. Not only that, but it could lead to self-inflicted damage and it’s this kind of uncertainty that Liff and others point to as the biggest deterrent to cyberwarfare.

Cyberwarfare is a tricky subject where nothing is black and white. Technology has a wonderful way of morphing from what it’s supposed to be, into something else entirely. Did anyone imagine that social media could play such a vital role for businesses at its advent? No, they all thought it was simply a way for people to look at what their ex was doing with their lives five years after a breakup. While the effects of cyberweapons could be devastating, they could also evolve into something that in fact brings about a new age of peace for our world.

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