Buried in a recent Edward Snowden disclosure is a passing remark from a briefing sheet on a program called “Sentry Eagle.” According to the briefing sheet, “unauthorized disclosure” of its contents would negatively impact the United States’ “ability to exploit foreign adversary cyberspace while protecting U.S. cyberspace.”
For many, such a remark might pass barely noticed, obscured beneath the more salacious operational details in the top secret slides. It definitely should not. It represents a deeply entrenched worldview at the heart of cyber security problems today.
What do we mean when we say “cyber security?” What is it, exactly, that we are securing? And for whom? Are we securing the Internet as a whole — that vast global information infrastructure that envelops the planet, from the code to satellites, the handheld devices, and everything in between?