Instead of countries entering a cybersecurity arms race in developing and using cybersecurity weapons against each other, United States President Barack Obama has called for international cooperation in fighting off non-state actors.
With past cyber security incidents involving Russian hacking attempts aimed at the United States, Obama said the US is currently more than equipped to fend off any such future attacks from any country. While no-hack pacts have already been signed between the US and China, Germany and China, China and the UK, and the US and Australia, Obama believes it would take more cooperation, and instituting norms would help enforce those pacts.
“We’re going to have enough problems in the cyber space with non-state actors, who are engaging in theft and using the internet for all kinds of illicit practices,” said Obama. “What we cannot do is have a situation in which suddenly this becomes the wild, wild West where countries that have significant cyber capacity start engaging in competition or unhealthy competition.”
Russia has yet to sign any no-hacking pacts with the United States, but the US President believes the G20 talks have been a step in the right direction. While the talks between the two presidents have focused more on “cybersecurity generally”, the 90-minute session between the two was aimed at avoiding escalation of the cyber arms race.
With no official statement from Russia regarding the proposed cyber regulations, it remains to be seen whether they will embrace the United States’ proposal for cyber cooperation.
The 2016 G20 Hangzhou summit was the first ever hosted in China. Other discussed topics included the fight against tax evasion, international trade favoring, fiscal stimulus, climate change, and supporting refugees.