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A graphic of a hammer breaking glass.

Mutual respect and trust are prerequisites for cyber security.

Breaking the Triangle of Distrust

October 2020, Number 10.04

“For more than 20 years, the majority of online activity was seen as positive, empowering and sparking many beneficial changes for society. Unfortunately, today some people are abusing this technology. Internet service providers (ISPs), law enforcement authorities (LEAs) and civil society have the common goal of making the internet a safer place. However, they address the challenges from different angles: LEAs want to catch criminals, ISPs want to satisfy their customers’ needs, and civil society wants to advocate for fundamental rights.

This article builds upon the author’s experience as a participant in the Program on Cyber Security Studies (PCSS) at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies in 2017. It aims to illustrate the necessity of a trustful collaboration among stakeholders and tries to outline existing biases.

When attending programs such as the PCSS, it’s a great challenge as an industry representative to speak for the whole industry because on most topics there is no common view. Most people might wrongfully assume that the majority of people working in the internet industry share similar cultural views. In reality, cultural and historical influences have a strong effect on their views...”

Excerpt from Maximilian Schubert, “Breaking the Triangle of Distrust,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 10, No. 4, 2020: 58-61.

Dr. Maximilian Schubert is the secretary-general of the Austrian Association of Internet Service Providers (ISPA). His main fields of expertise cover ISP liability law, telecommunication surveillance and law enforcement in the online sphere. He also serves as president of EuroISPA, the largest worldwide ISP association, where he is chairman of the Cybersecurity Committee.

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