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International Cyber Jurisdiction

Tiffany Rad
Chaos Communication Congress 27th (27C3) 2010
Indexed on
Mar 27, 2013
File name
File size
902.9 MB

Concepts of sovereignty, freedom, privacy and intellectual property become amorphous when discussing territories that only exists as far as the Internet connects. International cyber jurisdiction is supported by a complicated web of international law and treaties. Jurisdiction hopping, a technique that is becoming popular for controversial content, is one we have used for the U.S. 1st Amendment censorship-resistant and non-profit hosting company, Project DOD, by using PRQ's services in Sweden. This technique is used to place assets in a diverse, but accessible, web of countries in which that content may be legal in the hosting country, but may have legal complications in the country in which it is accessed. As ownership and protection of property becomes a concept that is difficult to maintain across boundaries that are not easily distinguishable, can the U.S. "kill-switch" parts of the Internet and under what authority can it be done? Similarly, the geographic challenges to international cyber criminal law – and the feasibility of new sovereign nations – will be analyzed. When a cybercrime is committed in a country in which the electronic communication did not originate, there is difficulty prosecuting the crime without being able to physically apprehend a subject that is virtually within – and physically without – a country's boarders. Similarly, a technique called jurisdiction hopping can be used to place assets in a diverse, but accessible, web of countries in which that content may be legal in the hosting country, but is not in the country in which it is accessed. Lastly, if the U.S. attempts to isolate damage by cutting off Internet connections, under what authority can it be done? This presentation will discuss the types of international laws and treaties that may be cited in the event of extradition of cyber criminals, legal and geographic challenges – such as new sovereign nations – to jurisdiction hopping and the authority with which the U.S. may "kill switch" the Internet. I will also discuss the practical example of where, as a result of our Project DOD case in U.S. Federal court, we have put non-copyright infringing materials on PRQ's servers in Sweden to reduce the incidences of Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s "Take Down" infringement notices that are illegitimate.

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