Published : 2021-04-21

Conventional Attack vs Digital Attack in the Light of International Law

Krzysztof Bobrowski

Section: Articles


International law does not currently possess adequate instruments to define aggression in cyberspace, as well as to identify and punish perpetrators. The classical definition of aggression is inadequate to the reality of cyberspace, in the area of legal doctrine and practice, the international law is not adjusted to the contemporary digital reality and the destinations in which the digital reality is heading. The current definition of aggression reflects past conflicts. Conventional aggression is related to the attack on the physical elements of a state (related to the territory). Whereas, a digital attack may, but does not have to, have a direct relation to the territory of the state. The nature of cyberspace varies from other spaces. The a-territorial character of cyberspace influences the assortment of difficulties in the international legal issues regarding cyberspace. Cyberspace is not an additional or a marginal field of the operations of units, organisations and
the state, but an area to which the entire sphere of operations is transferring. The war of the future will take place to a large extent in cyberspace.


conventional attack ; digital attack ; aggression in cyberspace ; definition of aggression


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Bobrowski, K. (2021). Conventional Attack vs Digital Attack in the Light of International Law. Polish Review of International and European Law, 10(1), 77-101.

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