Deter, Disrupt, or Deceive

cover art
336 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781647123307 ()

336 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781647123260 ()

ISBN: 9781647123253

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May 2023
Sales Rights: WORLD


Table of Contents

Deter, Disrupt, or Deceive
Assessing Cyber Conflict as an Intelligence Contest
Robert Chesney and Max Smeets, Editors
Foreword by Amy Zegart
A fresh perspective on statecraft in the cyber domain

The idea of "cyber war" has played a dominant role in both academic and popular discourse concerning the nature of statecraft in the cyber domain. However, this lens of war and its expectations for death and destruction may distort rather than help clarify the nature of cyber competition and conflict. Are cyber activities actually more like an intelligence contest, where both states and nonstate actors grapple for information advantage below the threshold of war?

In Deter, Disrupt, or Deceive, Robert Chesney and Max Smeets argue that reframing cyber competition as an intelligence contest will improve our ability to analyze and strategize about cyber events and policy. The contributors to this volume debate the logics and implications of this reframing. They examine this intelligence concept across several areas of cyber security policy and in different national contexts. Taken as a whole, the chapters give rise to a unique dialogue, illustrating areas of agreement and disagreement among leading experts and placing all of it in conversation with the larger fields of international relations and intelligence studies.

Deter, Disrupt, or Deceive is a must read because it offers a new way for scholars, practitioners, and students to understand statecraft in the cyber domain.
Robert Chesney is the Dean of the University of Texas School of Law, where he also holds the James A. Baker III Chair in the Rule of Law and World Affairs. He is also a co-founder of and contributor to the blog Lawfare and co-host of the National Security Law Podcast.

Max Smeets is a senior researcher at the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich and Director of the European Cyber Conflict Research Initiative.
"This unique volume offers compelling explanations of activities in the cyber domain, behavior that seems anomalous when viewed from well-known perspectives of 'war,' 'deterrence,' and 'intelligence.' Deter, Disrupt, or Deceive provides a new look at the nature of cyberspace and how the physical (virtual?) aspects of this domain shape the nature of conflict within it."—James J. Wirtz, professor, department of national security affairs, Naval Postgraduate School

"Fusing theoretical sophistication with empirical richness, this volume greatly enhances our understanding of cyber conflict. It dissects the relationship between intelligence and cyber operations, challenging assumptions and offering alternative analytical frameworks. In the best intellectual tradition, this is a mature conversation between genuine experts in their fields. Essential."—Tim Stevens, reader in International Security, King's College London

Table of Contents
Amy Zegart

Robert Chesney and Max Smeets

Robert Chesney and Max Smeets

Part I: A Theoretical Debate
1. The Elements of an Intelligence Contest
Joshua Rovner

2. The Character of Strategic Cyberspace Competition and the Role of Ideology
Michael Warner

3. Hidden Dangers in the American Military Solution to a Large-Scale Intelligence Problem
Jon R. Lindsay

4. Secrecy in Strategy
Lennart Maschmeyer

5. Cyber Persistence, Intelligence Contests, and Strategic Competition
Michael Fischerkeller & Richard Harknett

6. The United States and Legitimizing Rules of the Game
Steven Loleski

Part II: Country Case Studies
7. A Chinese Perspective on the New Intelligence Framework to Understand National Competition in Cyberspace
Lyu Jinghua

8. Russia's Holistic Conceptual Framework for Cyber Activity
Valeriy Akimenko and Keir Giles

9. The Development of United Kingdom's Cyber Posture
Ciaran Martin

Part III: Nonstate Actors
10. Private Actors and the Intelligence Contest in Cyber Conflict
JD Work

11. Taking Non-State Actors Seriously (No, Seriously)
Nina A. Kollars

Robert Chesney and Max Smeets

List of Contributors

Valeriy Akimenko, Robert Chesney, Michael P. Fischerkeller, Keir Giles, Richard J. Harknett, Lyu Jinghua, Nina A. Kollars, Jon Lindsay, Steven Loleski, Ciaran Martin, Lennart Maschmeyer, Joshua Rovner, Max Smeets, Michael Warner, JD Work, Amy Zegart