A Caution Sign in Front of Storm Clouds Warning of "Cyber Attacks Ahead."

Cyber attacks illustrate need for better defense.

An Unsettling Trend

April 2011, Number 02.02

“The 2010 United Nations Internet Governance Forum (IGF1 ) was held in Vilnius, Lithuania. Part of the IGF mandate is to “discuss public policy issues related to key elements of Internet governance in order to foster the sustainability, robustness, security, stability and development of the Internet.” The IGF was meeting for the fifth time since 2005. The discussion was mostly set in the context of protecting privacy and freedom of access to the Internet.

Very little attention, however, was given to dealing with several disturbing cyber security events that occurred during the period of the IGF’s five-year mandate. In 2007, for example, Estonia’s Internet infrastructure was attacked to such an extent that the country was cut off from the Internet. In 2008, Georgia experienced a devastating cyber attack on its information and communications systems that resulted in the isolation of the Georgian government and people from the rest of the world. These attacks resulted in significant violations of privacy and freedom of Internet access, the very things that the IGF seemed so concerned about protecting...”

Excerpt from Vytautas Butrimas, “An Unsettling Trend,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 2, No. 2, 2011: 10-15.

Vytautas Butrimas has been working in information technology and communications for more than 20 years, starting as a computer specialist for Prince William County, Virginia, and advancing to Vice Minister at the Ministry of Communications and Informatics, Republic of Lithuania. In 1998, he moved to the Ministry of Defense as policy and planning director. Since 2001, Mr. Butrimas has worked as deputy director of the CISS under the Ministry of Defense. In 2009, he led the task force that prepared the Cyber Defense Strategy and Implementation Plan. Mr. Butrimas is a two-time Marshall Center SES graduate SES 98-4 and SES 00-2.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.