The Necessity of (Some) Certainty - A Critical Remark Concerning Matthew Sklerov’s Concept of “Active Defense”

Sandro Gaycken


Cyber deterrence requires attribution. The location and the type of the cyber attacker have to be known. This is notoriously difficult for a number of technical and organizational reasons. Matthew Sklerov developed a concept to circumvent the necessity to know the type of attacker. However, the location has to be known as well and Sklerov only points to a disputable study about the attribution of location. This comment explains Sklerov’s idea, provides a brief sketch of the problems of attribution in general and in light of the study mentioned by Sklerov and arrives at the conclusion that the problem of attribution is not solved and unlikely to be solvable at all.

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