Computer network attacks as an act of aggression in the context of the development of modern international relations: pros and cons

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The article analyzes the conflicting approaches to the possible recognition of computer network attacks as an act of aggression in the focus of modern international relations and trends in scientific and technological progress. The question raised in the article is as follows: is aggression against another state possible through the exclusive use of cyber weapons? To solve the indicated problem, the scholastic method of conducting a discussion is used, in which two series of contradictory arguments regarding the subject of discussion are put forth, and the conclusion summarizes the general conclusion based on particular theses. The conclusion is argued that the historically established definition of aggression in modern conditions of development of scientific and technological progress does not meet the interests of international peace and security, since new types of force of destructive influence constantly appear, which can generate consequences comparable in scale and severity to the consequences of using conventional weapons. However, there are still some problematic moments that arise in connection with the qualification of cyberattacks as a crime of aggression, requiring understanding and resolution in accordance with the development of the science of international law and law enforcement practice in the context of international relations.

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About the authors

Dmitriy V. Lobach

Vladivostok State University of Economics and Service

Author for correspondence.

Russian Federation, Vladivostok

PhD in Law, Associate Professor of the Department of Theory and History of Russian and Foreign Law

Evgeniya A. Smirnova

Far Eastern Federal University


Russian Federation, Vladivostok

PhD in Law, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Labor and Environmental Law


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